Thursday, May 29, 2008

The Parking Lot Guy

First, I should say, I have no voice. I am barely able to whisper, except for the times when I am. I couldn't see the people on the other end of the conference calls I had yesterday, but I'm pretty sure they were making fun of me everytime I tried to speak.

Today I had a meeting across town. Every other time I've had to drive to this particular building, I've gotten lost and been late. Today, I didn't get lost, nor was I late. I pulled into the parking garage and the guy says, 'Where are you going?" I tried to answer, and eventually he understood what I was trying to say. When he handed me the parking ticket, he said, Refuah Sh'laima (Get Well). Only in Israel.

The other thing I can do in Israel is catch up on all of the shows I don't watch (and probably wouldn't watch) in the US. Like Stargate SG-1, and Dark Angel. And old seasons of The Apprentice.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Coffee Shop Culture

I've written about this in the past, but now that I work at home and at the local (Milwaukee) coffee shops, it bears writing about again. I've been sitting here at Tal Bagels for almost four hours. I ordered breakfast soon after arriving, and just got the bill, and only because I specifically asked for it, a few minutes ago. The one thing that's definitely nicer about working here and not my local shops is that there is no music. I don't mind the music that Panera or Caribou or Stone Creek play, but it's always loud. Not too loud to work with, but too loud to be on the phone with.

Plus, breakfst here is good. And if you don't want both orange juice and coffee (because breakfast comes with both), they'll give you two coffees. You gotta love a place like that.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Friday and beyond

I was back up North for Shabbat. They've been doing construction on the Bik'a road for a long time and it seems that almost all of it is done. They've taken some of the mystique out of it, but it is definitely a nicer ride. There are even passing lanes in places now. Unfortunately the only wildlife I saw were a few camels.

Tiberius is hot. And not in the hip, fashionable Paris Hilton sense of the word. About a block away from our hotel there's a supermarket next door to a mini-market. I always wondered how they could exist next door to each other and on Friday afternoon I figured it out. The supermarket sells cold alcoholic drinks. The mini-market sells cold soft drinks.

I bought a flavored water, which I don't usually do. It was litchi-watermelon flavored. It wasn't terrible, just not something that I'd like to do again soon.

Thursday, May 22, 2008


I stayed in Zichron Yakov my first night in Israel. I've never been in a hotel whose room had a residential exterior door for an interior entrance. It was the kind of door that has a semi-circle of glass in the top part of the door so that light can come in. Which is fine if the door is being used to enter a room where no one sleeps. But on a bedroom door, with a lit hallway, it's really not a good idea.

A simple solution for a few hours, was to sleep facing away from the door. But around 3am, the moon (a night away from being full) came shining in the window. It took about 90 minutes for it to move across the window frame. (this was when I learned that there is nothing good on at 4am on television in Israel).

The good news was that the night preceded a visit to Caesaria, which is always good.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Sittin' in the Yellow

Yes, I'm sitting in the Yellow (like a gas station/7-11) working. Tiberius is a great place, even if I'm the only person that thinks so, EXCEPT, they have no wireless internet access anywhere. So here I am, back at the gas station. The advantage is that there is a table near an outlet. This is specifically important because I forgot to charge my computer last night. Had it been fully charged, I would be sitting next door in the Aroma cafe working and eating a great salad for lunch. But the Aroma has no outlets, which I knew before I even got there. As it is, I'm sitting under a ridiculously loud radio drinking grapefruit juice. But at least I'm charging my computer. (i'm up to 54%, in case you were wondering.)

Last night I learned that even in Israel, there's nothing on television at 4am. And what there was, was something I couldn't really figure out. My hotel didn't have cable, so I had three fuzzy channels and one more clear one to choose from. Since I was still tired despite not being able to sleep, I chose the clear channel. It was a pretty regular Israeli station, but at 4am it was showing some sort of reality show following an Arab group of singers trying out for Eurovision. They were speaking in Arabic and I was trying to follow the Hebrew subtitles. By reality tv standards, it wasn't a great show and I'm not expecting to see them singing in any international competitions soon.

Did I mention that the bathrooms on the plane had Lemon Grass Wasabi handsoap?

(up to 61%)

Monday, May 19, 2008

Airplane Bathrooms

I just don't understand cramped, smelly airplane bathrooms that try to be nice by having Lemongrass Wasabi handsoap. Huh? At least they had good movies.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

May 14th

The paper today had several articles about Israel's 60th birthday. Even though I know the date May 14th as well as I know July 4th, I couldn't figure out why the articles were in the paper today. Yom Ha'atzmaut was last week.

Really, it took a few minutes before I remembered that a) today is May 14th and b) Yom Ha'atzmaut is celebrated on the 5th of Iyar and not the 14th of May.

Now it all makes sense...