Politics, Gas Pumps and IKEA

We were busy taking advantage of the fact that we still had the use of a car on Wednesday and Thursday. We started out driving over to Mitzpe Nevo to look at a shelf unit someone was selling which turned out to be too tall for our storage room’s slanted ceiling. But it wasn’t a wasted trip up 3 flights of stairs because we knocked on the wrong door first and met Gidon Ariel (of the Holy City Prayer Society and SBI), a Ma’aleh Adumim veteran who is running for city council. Gidon filled us in on the local politics and the benefits of joining the Likud party. It actually costs money here to join a political party! But if you sign up now, it’s buy one/get the second for half price (just under 100 shekels – what a deal)!

From there we went grocery shopping at Rami Levi. And then got a quick appointment at Maccabi with Dr. Jamal Yosef for Yisrael because he had a sore throat. It turned out to be a virus, has to run it’s course, etc.

Wednesday morning and evening I tried, unsuccessfully, to make reservations and obtain directions to the Ir David Archeological Experience at the Emek Zurim National Park and Hezekiah’s Tunnel tour. Imagine a tourist location that doesn’t have someone who speaks English available to answer questions or take reservations!

I tried again on Thursday morning, but gave up after an hour on the Egged bus website attempting to read (and comprehend) the location names in the Jerusalem drop-down menu. Not having experienced quite enough frustration, I then moved on to determining what we need to do to obtain our Israeli driver’s licenses – I’ll let you know when I’ve figured it out!

In the meantime, Michael had been communicating with the manufacturer of chrome wire shelving units and discovered that although they could sell them directly to us, we could buy them for less at IKEA in Netanya. I remembered that my friend Esther had mentioned she had recently gone there so I called her for directions.

We stopped for gas and this time Michael decided to go to the self-service pumps to avoid being overcharged by the full-service guy again.

Looks like a normal gas pump, right?

But the instructions are in Hebrew! And we couldn’t understand what it wanted from us!

Fortunately a man with elementary English skills assisted and then Michael was able to pump the gas after I swiped my bank card and entered my tuedat zehut number.

After that challenge, we embarked on the 1-1/2 hour journey up north – which turned out to take almost 3 hours because we got lost in Herzliya! Esther assisted us via cell phone and we finally arrived around 6 p.m. – but not to worry, they’re open until midnight on Thursdays.

Michael feels that the IKEA experience is a right-of-passage and we are now officially Israeli.:D More on that, and our new bedroom closets, later – it’s 12:55 a.m., Yisrael starts Ulpan Camp at 8:30, and I’m becoming envious of Michael’s snoring…

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