Before I left for Israel I changed my voice mail asking whoever called to please email me instead of leaving a message. I probably repeated myself three or four times and basically said I wouldn't be checking voice mail until the end of January.
Shock of all shocks - when I turned my cell phone in New York, there were no messages. None. Not one. Now it could be that whoever called simply followed my instructions. But since that doesn't usually happen, I decided that maybe it was the length of the actual message, and that at some point, they just gave up waiting for the beep. I remember leaving a fairly long message and I'm not interested in listening to it all again to time it, that's how long I think it is.
Mimi suggested I leave a new one that says something to the effect of, "I'm back, but I still don't want to talk to anyone...".