jews.

currently working for the Jewish Agency part time, but it might as well be an ulpan or a classroom…

it seems every kind of Jew works, visits or guards this office. you really can’t ever know what to expect –

· young macho Israeli guards hitting on you
· old-time kibbutzniks cheering you up and singing about Shabbat
· young, modern pregnant Israeli women chit-chatting in the halls
· clueless Americans fulfilling the need to fulfill ‘the dream’
· know-it-all American Israelis who think they have the best word on all sides

…then you’ll get an occasional visitor who will completely turn around the scope of your day. they’ll sit quietly, with an Aliyah form in their hands, and then begin tearfully explaining that she never had a shot at formal education, she can’t read or write because she had to work hard since she emmigrated from Germany in order to push her kids through top medical schools…

it’s your turn to sit quietly and then nod as she fills in her application at your hands while you try to keep up with her answers, each delicately woven from memories…

Date of Birth?: ____2 February 1919______

Place of Birth?: ____Poland________

Jewish?: ______________

no need for words. only the tattooed numbers on her left arm.

still looking.

totally unrelated subject… or is it?

when you’re looking for something that you’re not sure was ever really there, when is it time to stop? how do you stop?

i want to get into the depths of this >no words

uncertain/smiles

went to the consulate today to pick up my olah visa in my passport.

i didnt realize this would happen, but – it felt so >no words
i’ve gotten used to that smile and i’m not even there yet.

and then, i take the envelope with my documents, and like a kid awaiting a report card or a birthday present (somehow those two emotions together make sense here) i take out my passport and flip to the thick page in the center where what i see is

“State of Israel Visa” Category: Aliyah

and there it is, my picture staring back at me, a smile, smiling – but i am not sure why yet…

moving along.

i’m getting to the hard part now. the emotional part. the, ‘liz are you sure you wanna do this?’ part. the grrroooaann part.

and i just wish there was someone who could make it better but at the same time, i just wanna do this myself.

paperwork.

yesterday i dropped off my passport to get my oleh visa at the Israeli Consulate.
much quicker and easier than i expected! took about 5 minutes. if only every step of this proces could take 5 minutes…
like finding an apartment, a job, a purpose…
well, anyways, for those thinking about doing this, here is a little list:

->think about what you wanna do there, why you wanna go there
->get a passport!
->contact shaliach at the Jewish Agency
->little phone interview
->in-person interview
->fill out forms (proof of Judaism, copy of passport, loads of passport photos)
->apply to nefesh b nefesh (optional, but highly recommended)
->be thinking about what you wanna do there
->follow up with shaliach (garanteed they havent gotten back to you)
->bring your passport and forms to Israeli Consulate for Oleh Visa
->think more about what you wanna do there
->meet other people making aliyah
->decide what you wanna do there

i havent reached that last step. i will though… someday…

wedding season.

weddings are nice because they give you cause to dream about yourself.

it’s wedding season now; i have four more to go and after tonight i am able to look more forward to them then i was before. weddings are out of body experiences i think; or rather, out of self experiences. you can take a step back at weddings – and a step forward. and dream.

also, it is a great way to be a purely giving person during that span of time, and by giving purely and not thinking of yourself, you can have an amazing time – you’re making the bride and groom and family happy and for awhile, you forget your issues, which frankly, are stupid issues anyway once you hit the ‘real’ world.