Sunday, June 15, 2014

Finally Settling In...

After almost a week in Israel, I am starting to finally get used to this city. Let's not jump the gun now I'm still HORRIBLE with directions, but I'm learning my way around slowly but surely usually through trial and error. I have a lot to write about, but I'm going to try and keep this short and concise. Here it goes....

I have officially worked two days at my internship WOOHOO! The work week is Sunday-Thursday so I worked two days last week and am headed off to work today in an hour. The first day was a mess, to say the least. Israelis run on their own time, so my boss was an hour late to our apparent "start time." All of these children were being wheeled out of the building (all are wheelchair bound) and we literally had no idea what we were supposed to do! Finally our boss arrived and she explained that we should just observe for the day. We sat it on their dance class, which consisted of the dance teacher rolling these children around for about an hour while music was playing. We left in a sense of confusion that day, as to what our job would consist of. The next day was a little better, but that's pushing it. We started the day by feeding the children. I got yelled at since I did not put the hummus on the bread correctly. Apparently you put the hummus on and THEN cut the bread, but the dumb American (me) cut the bread and THEN put hummus on! Mistakes, mistakes! Many of the children have cerebral palsy, which is a movement disorder. This is why many of them are in wheelchairs as well as most of them are non-verbal. This makes it very difficult to communicate with them, especially since the few words they do know are in Hebrew. After we fed the children, we played ball for I kid you not, one hour. None of them can catch the ball so I literally sat there bouncing a ball on their laps while they laughed and smiled for about an hour straight.

My internship is definitely rewarding, but it wasn't exactly what i originally signed up for. I'm meeting with my internship coordinator to see if I can do that a few days a week and then something else the other days.

The food here is AMAZING... there really is no other way to put it. Any meal you have is just incredible. The dumpiest restaurant which you would never walk into in the United States is a gourmet meal here. Today, my friend Tali and I woke up early (10am) and went to the Shuk, which is their big outdoor market here. It's actually called the Carmel Market, but Shuk just stands for Market. Anyway, it was definitely an experience. You could buy everything from cigarettes, flip flops, underwear, to fresh fruit, vegetables, and bread. Quite the combination!

I have gone out 4 days in a row here... count it, 4. Yesterday served as my "Shabbat for my liver" because it really did need a break! The nightlife here is amazing and there are so many fun bars and clubs to go explore. We have mostly been going to bars, but two nights ago we went to a club called Dreams. It was in a mall... like an actual shopping mall. I have never seen anything so bizarre in my life, but it was a lot of fun! If you ask my friends they'll tell you that I HATE being crammed in a confined space and HATE people touching me when I'm out. Like, when you are all squished like sardines in a club.. so not my thing! But, I actually enjoyed myself at Dreams, minus the 118 shekel shots we had for 4 people. While out, we have met some very interesting people to say the least. Israeli boys are notorious for preying on American girls, but at least all these interactions count for good stories to tell!

Tonight we are having a "mixer" with all of the Onward groups here. It'll be nice to get to know other people on the program besides the Pittsburgh people. Oh, speaking of, I've made a bunch of friends! Mom, Dad, you'll be happy about that! :) Haha. But seriously, everyone is so nice and I couldn't have asked for a better group of people!

Time to go get ready for Day #3 of my internship.... Boker tov (Good Morning) to all of you in the US...

Friends on a motorcycle... Don't worry, it wasn't on!

Gay Pride Parade

Sam and I 


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