Thursday evening after the conference Allie and I went to Jerusalem. I went out for hummus with Daniel and his friends at “the best hummus place in Jerusalem” (this “best hummus” thing is a long standing debate all around the country and it always depends who you ask). After hummus we went to Daniel’s friends house then I met up with my sister and some friends at a bar in the center of Jerusalem. Since bars don’t really close here until everyone leaves, it’s kind of hard to remember to leave. 3:30 seemed like a good time, though, and so we made our way back to my sister’s old apartment in Jerusalem for the night. Side note: my sister’s friend Adina still lives in the apartment.
Friday, New Year’s Eve, I helped clean the apt and get ready for Shabbat and then headed off to Tel Aviv to ring in the New Year. I met up with Michelle and Melissa, two friends from study abroad, and their two friends they are traveling with. I brought with me two of Adina’s friends from the states that were visiting for her wedding. We had coffee and dinner then walked around to kill time. After stopping to buy 6 bottles of champagne and a bottle of vodka to bring with us, we were off to the party. We decided it would be okay to drink one of the bottles of champagne on the walk over since there is no open container law here, and it was a fairly long walk. New Year’s eve was fun, even though we never made it out to the bar nor did I see the ball drop (can’t speed up time :( ).
Saturday was back to Jerusalem. Shabbat stuff all day, lounged around, ate, went for a walk, etc. Saturday night we did some things to get ready for Adina’s wedding on Sunday and then Allie and I went to Abe’s apartment for the night in East Jerusalem. Sunday morning I opened a bank account and got my Teudat Zehut (proof that I am a citizen!). Thankfully, because of Allie, this was 1000 times easier than it should have been had I done it on my own.
Sunday night was Adina and Yaakov’s wedding!! As a refresher, Adina was my sister’s roommate in Jerusalem; they met in Ulpan when they first made Aliyah. It was my first Jewish wedding, too! The place was beautifully decorated and both the ceremony and party were great. It was really happy and fun, the band played music while the Rabbi was doing his thing and everyone cheered many times. It was a funny combination of American/Canadian/Moroccan/Israeli, Hebrew/English, religious/non-religious, which made it all the better.
Today I went to the bank again, all by myself, and finished setting up the account. I am not sure that I will actually receive a debit card but I think that’s what I am picking up “not Sunday, but after Sunday.” The very nice lady said that about 12 times. On my way back to Allie’s apartment, I met up with Michelle, Melissa, Emily and Tara again and we had dinner in Haifa. What a long first week!
One more week until I move into Jerusalem, I am excited not to have to lug a duffle bag around with me everywhere. Public transportation is not a convenient way of life, but I am getting used to it again.