I landed late Tuesday and have mainly been roaming around Tel Aviv. I must say, it's a paradise here. A very expensive paradise.
Lesson 1: don't expect to find a place to stay for over a month as soon as you land, plan ahead. It took me a couple days, lots of inquiries, and a bit of anxiety but I officially found a place to live while I'm here. Unfortunately, I can't move in until Monday night. Instead of extending my hotel reservation, I decided to go out of town for the weekend. So Kate (a Chapman classmate) and I rented a car and are currently headed north.
Lesson 2: Americans are EVERYWHERE in Tel Aviv. With my limited travel experience, I never really ran into Americans. In Tel Aviv I am surrounded by them. I even saw someone wearing a UC Santa Cruz shirt!! Also the majority that I have met are from California (and the majority of the Israelis I met want to move to California.) So basically I don't feel very out of place at all.
Lesson 3: Hebrew is real hard to learn. I need to learn for my job and lessons are really expensive. I downloaded some audiobook lessons and have been learning that way. So far I can hold a short conversation which I'm pretty stoked about. My new roommate told me she would help me, thank god! Once I start using it at work I'll get the hang of it faster.
Lesson 4: there is bacon here!!!! My dad reminded me the other day that Jewish people don't eat pork products, meaning no bacon. I almost died. As a result I decided to be a vegetarian again, bacon is the only reason I eat meat anyways. This morning before endeavoring on our road trip, Kate took me to this burger joint and they had bacon!! Needless to say, I'm back to eating meat. The bacon here isn't that great though :(
I haven't really taken any photos but I promise to take tons on this road trip!!