I've officially been an Israeli for 1 week and 2 days and a lot has happened in that short period of time. Life in Israel is fast-paced and seems like it never stops (but it magically does on Shabbat).
Tuesday I arrived in Jerusalem at Beit Canada (בית קנדה) for Ulpan Etzion. For those unfamiliar, Ulpan is a course for learning Hebrew. My particular program is an intensive, live-in Ulpan. There are over 200 of us from all over the world living here at Beit Canada! I has been nice to be with many other olim chadashim (new immigrants). Together we've been navigating the many bureaucratic tasks that we need to get taken care of. I've visited several DMV-like offices in the last couple of days (you know the kind where you take a number and then go to a certain number window and then another window). I officially have my teudat zeut (ID card), phone number, and bank account – although not without some difficulty. My first teudat zeut was spelled wrong! They put Alberston instead of Albertson and I had to visit Misrad Haponim (Ministry of Interior) to get a new one before I could get my bank account or anything else.
Many have asked about my living conditions. We are placed in apartments with 2-4 people. In my particular apartment I have just 1 other roommate. Her name is Shelby and she is from Chigaco. Our apartment has one larger room with 2 beds in it and another tiny room with 1 bed in it. I decided to take the tiny room. Each apartment has it's own bathroom and a small kitchen with a little stove and refrigerator (although we don't need the refrigerators because our apartments are so freezing cold!!!). There are quite a few things we need to get for the apartment, and slowly but surely we are turning out little ice box into a home!
And for the foodies, I have officially had both falafel and shawarma. I have also had Israeli breakfast and shakshouka twice.
That's all for now! I'm sure I'll have more to report when class actually starts (if I survive...). Shabbat Shalom!