Sunday, July 26, 2009

getting cold feet

Let's go over that list of concerns-- you know, the one that seems to stay the same, no matter how many times I go over it for no good reason (because there's nothing new added and nothing taken away)...let's try it like this: concern-reason-solution (if applicable)

1. Money (biggest concern) - Because I need money to live on and I won't have an immediate income. Yes, I'll have sal klita, but that's not so much, and sal klita stops after 7 months (8, if you count the housing assistance grant) and then I don't have an income. Yes, I can get unemployment, but I don't want to and can't necessarily count on that. And Israeli salaries aren't American salaries. I want to live in Jerusalem, at least initially, because that's where my chevre is mostly. Things are expensive there, though. Even though rent is, say, ~$400-$600, and I could easily pay that on my current salary, I have no clue what my Israeli salary will be (once I start getting one).
Fixed expenses: Rent + arnona + va'ad bayit, inner-city bus transportation, internet, landline phone (if applicable), extra medical coverage
Unfixed-But-Will-Be-Pretty-Much-The-Same-Each-Month expenses: Cell phone, grocery, electricity, water,
Completely Unfixed expenses: Eating out, out-of-city transportation, bank fees

2. Job (ties into #1) - I need money to live off of - No answer. I have to take the OT licensing exam, except it's in Hebrew...which sucks, because my Hebrew is not good enough yet. It takes me about three times as long as it does in English, and I have to look a lot up. Not going to be able to do that on the exam...And I know there are other jobs I can do, but...I just...maybe it's the overqualification and pride. But I can't see myself working as a cashier or cleaning houses. That aside, I can't even speak Hebrew well enough for those. And I'm not a salesperson to work as HAS. I really don't know.

3. Missing family and friends - Because most of them are in the US - Skype is a possible solution, and an okay one. But there are things I won't be able to do, such as physically be there and help. Like now-- I'm spending about 1.5-2 hours at the hospital with my Zaidy every day. When I'm in Israel, I won't be able to do that. Even if I could "visit" him over Skype, there's things I can't do through the computer. I can't help my mom schlep through the computer, or help my dad with household things. It's things that they can do but me being there makes it easier. I talk to Andrea and Yoni on the phone more, but Squishy hasn't quite gotten the hang of it yet. I'm going to miss her a lot, seeing her do things and just...her. Elissa-- I don't even want to think about it; we're scarily like 1 person in 2 bodies. And I'm leaving Sara and Chari. This sucks. And I don't know how often I'll be able to come in-- I'd like to come in at least for summers, because that way I can work here for the summer and get to spend 2 months with my family. But I don't know if I'll really be able to.

4. Living Arrangements- Because I need somewhere to live after ulpan and don't want to live in a merkaz klita - I want to eventually move up North. I know I don't want to live in an Anglo enclave/mini America. It's going to be much more expensive in terms of everything, and it's not exactly conducive to klita. If I'm moving to Israel, I'd like to move there. I want to live in a place with other olim, because that increases the availability of things for olim and I will definitely be taking advantage and using whatever I can, but I don't want to be in an American bubble. I want to be in at least a mixed area. Most of my chevre is in Jerusalem, and really if I want to get married, the places with the most singles are Jerusalem and TA. And I have more friends in Jlem and the merkaz overall.

What else? Of course I'll miss Wal-Mart and Jack's World and JCPenney and the subway (don't even get me started on how much I'm going to miss the subway) and real ziploc bags. But I'll have the shuk and the crazy Israeli drivers and...salad at every meal-- actual fresh veggies. And fresh halva, which I can get sick on. And, well...I'll be in Israel.

1 comment:

  1. I made aliyah many years ago (1989) I have since returned to England, but was there for 10 years, its tough trying to integrate, I went to kibbutz
    They would always say 'you are not israeli till you join the army' so I did. Then they say ' you are not Israeli till you fight in a war' so I did. then they said 'you are not Israeli till you die fighting'. to which I said 'eehh' and then 'ooofff'.