Wednesday, July 16th:
We had a 10 AM appointment at Misrad HaKlita (office the Ministry of Immigrant Absorption – MoIA) and hired Daniella Aaron to watch Yisrael so we wouldn’t have to listen to “this is SO boring”, “do we HAVE to go to another place? Can’t we just go home?” etc. She is a great sitter – he loved her and we were very happy!
We took the #175 bus to the Central Bus Station and then the #20 (I think) to King George St.
and walked to Hillel St. to meet with Ina at Misrad HaKlita. Ina set up MoIA’s direct deposit of our sal klita (monthly financial benefit to help with living expenses until we have jobs) payments into our bank account, and advised us about ulpan and other benefits. It was the quickest, most pleasant appointment we’ve had with any government office (US or Israel) that I can recall.
On the way back we got off at the Ma’aleh Adumim mall and walked over to City Hall where we met with Shelley Brinn, our Aliyah coordinator. Shelley took us to the education department so we could get Yisrael enrolled in Ma’aleh HaTorah.
The school is currently closed, but I was able to find other parents who have the book and supply list (they actually give it out here at the end of the school year!)
With the exception of the first day (August 31st 8 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.), and the first two weeks (8 a.m. – 1:15 p.m.) school runs:
Sunday, Monday, Wednesday & Thursday: 8 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Tuesday: 8 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Friday: 8 a.m. – 11:30 p.m.
Shelley then set us up to receive more financial benefits – which is when I discovered that I left the bank form (the one that authorizes us to open a bank account and provides the gov’t with our account number) at the MoIA! Shelley called and left a message for them to fax it to her, but… I will probably have to scan and send Shelley a copy of the account agreement on Sunday.
And before we left the building, Shelley had us set up with Ma’aleh Adumim Discount Cards for all sorts of attractions and shopping! Shelley is an incredibly helpful person – her love for her job shines through.
We found out that if there are at least 15 people at the same level of Hebrew skills, we will have an ulpan right here in Ma’aleh Adumim – Hey! Those of you who have been toying with the idea of Aliyah, we need you here now (achshav in Hebrew)!
Children’s ulpan may start mid-August and continues through the school year. Their day begins with ulpan and then they get transported to join their class through the end of the day.
After meeting with Shelley, we did some food shopping at Kikar Yaalom
and found Yoni – a man who hand makes closets and book cases. When Michael mentioned to him that we were having trouble finding a power supply for our Uniden phone system, he jumped up and walked us back to the hardware store where he went behind the counter and found them for us.
Then Michael went home to relieve Daniella (and wait for the Internet technician to deliver and install our ADSL) and I went to Mr. Zol in the mall (the main grocery store here). After filling a cart, with ice cream at the top of the list since we finally had a freezer, I decided to take the cab home (15 shekels $4.40).
We enjoyed a dinner of fresh French bread, cheeses and fruits just after sunset out on our mirpeset (balcony) overlooking the breathtaking Judean hills and Ma’aleh Adumim. And we had ICE CREAM for dessert!