Thursday, December 31, 2009

Israel 2009

Earlier I had posted about Chanukah at the Kotel, and now it had actually happened. I went with my family to Israel for my little brothers Bar Mitzvah. He did a great job leining Parshas Meiketz, the longest Parsha, and I’m so proud of him! Since it was my little sister’s birthday also, she got a cake. It reminds me of my twin brothers bar mitzvah, when I got a cake too.

We left to Israel on December 6. It was nice having SN come over and see us off. I brought my laptop with me thinking I would have internet in Israel and be able to communicate with SN that way, but it wasn’t so simple. Everywhere I went I kept thinking about SN. We took lots of pictures and videos so that we would be able to share the experience.

I had a great time in Israel spending time with both of my grandparents, and meeting other relatives. We didn’t do much touring since the men and boys went to a lot of Kvarim.

While my father and brother were at Har Hazaisim they had an Arab aim a gun at them, and their taxi driver said he’ll protect them, and B”H nothing happened. Then they were walking around looking for Avremel Zalmanowitz’s Kever 2 men out of nowhere came to help them find it. Then after Davening there, they turned around and the men were gone. When I heard that it reminded me of the stories where Eliyahu Hanavi, or someone would just appear miraculously. 

We went to 4 places, the Kotel, Kever Rochel, Mearas Hamachpaila and Mini Israel.

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Some interesting things I noticed about Israel:

  1. The lights go from Red –> Yellow –> Green
  2. People do not cross against the light, even if there are no cars coming.
  3. Their latkes are not made from potatoes
  4. The people want it to rain
  5. There’s so much security, that they check your pocketbook at a grocery store
  6. There are lions everywhere, looks like it’s their national symbol
  7. The shuk sells everything loose, there are sacks of all different kinds of spices.

Last time I went to Israel I kept a diary of my trip. This time however, I e-mailed SN a daily summary of how my day in Israel was, instead. Interestingly most of my thoughts on my first Israel trip, apply to the second as well.

We left Israel December 21st, and arrived back in time to see all the snow on the ground. Our flight only got delayed about 3 hours. The day I was flying to come back, SN was flying to Florida, so we missed each other. Today SN is flying back from LA, and interestingly he’ll be arriving to snow too.

I had fun buying presents for friends and family. I gave the large family a present, and realized that the mother is expecting child number 13! (The oldest is now 18!). The 3 year old still didn’t get a hair cut! I think their afraid that he won’t want to wear his yarmulka and then he’ll look like a “goy”, this way he just looks like a 2 year old.

I spent a day with Auror and gave her some presents, she is really such a great friend! We had fun trying on dresses and perfume. She brings out the “girl” in me.

Tomorrow I get to see SN, and I can’t wait to finally see him and show him what I bought, and to give him some presents.