Wednesday, May 7, 2008

As Promised.....Sixty Things I Love About Living in Israel

The transition from Yom Hazikaron to Yom Haatzmaut is really something over here. Yom Hazikaron was so moving, and the party thrown by Modiin to usher in Yom Haatzmaut was spectacular--Poogy, fireworks and more. It feels good to be in the thick of things. This a special year--it is the sixtieth anniversary of the day David Ben Gurion declared us to be an independent Jewish state

So without further ado--here is my list, not necessarily in order.


1. Hebrew
2. If you yell "Doody!" in the street, you're not cursing, but calling your army buddy.
3. Falafel
4. The "shneckel" (new 2 shekel coin)
5. The sirens that sound on Yom HaShoah VeHaGvura and Yom HaZikaron
6. Museums are free on Chol HaMoed
7. Eilat
8. Milk in bags
9. Getting to know my cousins and aunt and uncles
10. Sure there's a line, but it's not meant for me.
11. My Teudat Zehut (Identity card)
12. You give out your Teudat Zehut number everywhere and to anyone without any qualm or fear of identity theft. I don't know why. In the US, I wouldn't give my own mother my social security number.
13. The Hermon
14. Well, really all of the Golan.
15. At a stop at a random gas station, shelves of chametz were covered for Pesach.
16. Borecas (Israel's national heart attack food)
17. Cup of Joe
18. The Kotel
19. That I know my way around, I what the 443 and the 5 and 20 and the 2 are and where they go. I can even take some short cuts occasionally.
20. Marta
21. The words "Walla" and "sababa"
22. The machsomim (checkpoints)
23. The soldiers at the machsomim
24. Make that, the soldiers everywhere
25. Pizza Domino in Modiin Center. Not to be confused with Dominoes Pizza, which isn't kosher. No one else in my family likes this pizza, so I try to order from them often, this way I don't have to share.
26. Israeli wine.
27. Drying my laundry in the sun....really, I love it.
28. Food products wish us a chag sameach, in, of course, Hebrew.
29. Jerusalem
30. Everyone, from the guy behind the McDonald's counter to the girl who pumps your gas wishes you a "Shabbat Shalom" or "Chag Sameach".
31. You can get kosher McDonald's if you want it (I don't).
32. It's hard to get around after 3 PM on a Friday--no buses or trains.
33. The Galil
34. Gan Hashlosha
35. The kids can go to school, even if they have lice.
36. Marian
37. Tova
38. Mangal, baby
39. The view of the mountains as I drive up Rechov Yehuda to see Arlene or Tammy
40. The Post Office, where you can pay bills, open up a bank account, and yes, even buy stamps.
41. If you really want to, you can find Santa Claus, but it won't be for Christmas, it will be for Chanuka. And Israelis won't understand why you find that ironic.
42. You can bargain for anything in almost any store.
43. The ocean.
44. Palm trees.
45. Double dipping in the supermarket. When they were handing free sufganiyot on Chanukah, I saw a woman take one, take a bite, then redip the doughnut in the sugar on the tray. After all, we are all one family.
46. There are ancient olive presses, mikvahs, burial sites and shuls everywhere. Come visit us and I'll show you the ones in my backyard.
48. Rosh Hanikra
49. Ateret Kohanim and the work they do in having Jews return to East Jerusalem
50. My Hyundai Getz rental. (Sniff. I had to return it. Sniff.)
51. I wore my winter jacket twice this winter. My kids didn't wear theirs at all.
52. Nachalat Binyamina, the art shuk in Tel Aviv on Tuesdays and Fridays.
53. The music of David Broza.
54. Yad Vashem
55. Kibbutz Beerot Yitzchak
56. The "dud"
57. My mirpeset (porch)
58. The year evolves around the Jewish calendar and MY holidays.
59. The neighborhood streets in Modiin are named for the Shvatim (12 tribes), Hebrew months of the year, the Neviim (prophets), Women in the the Tanach, Rivers and streams in Israel, and Israeli war heroes.
60. It's a dream come true.

Happy Birthday, with love.

P.S. I had uploaded many pictures to give this post more visual interest, only to somehow lose them--I have no idea how they could be lost and not the whole post, but I'm glad I have something because I sure as heck am not re-writing this...
P.S.S. This concludes my experiment of publishing a post a day--much as I love doing it, it's a bit much for me. So I am now returning back to my regular 1-2 posts a week.

See y'all soon.

8 comments:

Leora said...

35. The kids can go to school, even if they have lice.
I love it! Cracked me up.

SuperRaizy said...

Oh, my God, are they still selling milk in bags? Haven't they noticed yet that they leak?

Anonymous said...

#61. Yom Ha'atzmaut celebrated while living in Israel isn't the mixture of joy and longing that it is when you live in the U.S. I miss you..

CK

Rachel said...

#62: Going to the Kotel, Ein Gedi, Ben-Yehuda etc. etc. . . .and sleeping in my own bed that night.

Phyllis Sommer said...

great list. i couldn't write more than 13 without starting my application for aliyah so i had to stop there...

RR said...

Great list! #30 is so true, I marvel at that all the time.

Raizy, they still sell milk in bags but most people buy the cartons or plastic jugs- we do! I have no desire to deal with leaky bags of milk.

RR said...

Forgot to say that #10 made me LOL-so true!!

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

Some helpful hints...

12: 12. You give out your Teudat Zehut number everywhere and to anyone without any qualm or fear of identity theft. I don't know why. In the US, I wouldn't give my own mother my social security number. Identity theft IS becoming a problem here...be a bit more careful about who you give it to.

22. The machsomim (checkpoints) Not sure why you love them. They make many people's lives miserable (and that goes for settlers too)

35. The kids can go to school, even if they have lice.ARG! Personally, I hate this.

41. If you really want to, you can find Santa Claus, In Meah Shearim/Geula -- you can find "Sabba Sukkot" [Santa] on the colorful lights being sold...

56. The "dud" Replacing the "guf chimum" is a pain...

But overall - I like the list :)

Aren't you glad to be home?