Don't worry Tali this post will be a lot shorter. So everything has gotten back to normal with full classes, and volunteering.
Ulpan has started. I'm still in the 2nd to highest level and guess what? This time my teach is not an 84 yr old teacher who can't remember who we are. We have had three classes and one test so far (I got a 91%) and I learned more in the first class than I did in all of Jerusalem. To be fair its hard to learn Ivrit in Jerusalem b/c everyone just speaks English. Hearing people speak English in Bat Yam is a strange occurrence. Yesterday, Sunday, after a run to the beach with Michal, Jessica, and Katie, some Israeli female soldiers asked Michal and I (Jessica and Katie were making some weird spectacle) if we are on Year Course. We started up a conversation, and they were Sofim last year on Year Course! They knew that we were on YC b/c we spoke English, which is my point I think? It is exactly a mile from our apartment to the beach. So it is a pretty good run and then we usually walk&or run along the boardwalk and then walk home. I've ran for the last three days in a row and now my tush and body is sore.
Volunteering has been pretty good. Depending upon the day decides which classes we get and some of the 4th graders are just crazy and exhaust me. Anna returned to Israel on that Monday so she wasn't at volunteering that day, and it was Simon's first day at volunteering. Simon is a Brit, he makes volunteering quite interesting. We play Bingo a lot in class. Simon just wants to talk about football (soccer) with the kids. We actually played a game, where I ended up tripping a kid by accident :( I felt so bad. No more playing football for me.
Classes are going pretty well. The David Project is pretty cool and we are practicing using our ARM (Address, Reframe, and Message) responses to questions regarding Israel. It took some time for me to get used to formulating my answers like that but while looking at people's interviews they definitely use that form of answering questions. (If you want powerpoints from class let me know and i can forward them to you). The King David class is going well. We are almost up to the point where David comes into the picture. We had to go back in time to look at the reasons why we needed a King. The system using the Judges wasn't working. So we learned how King Saul was anointed 3 times.
My Siyyur last week was to Rabin Square and the Tel Aviv Opera house. But first that morning, Shevet went to the Kabblah Center in Tel Aviv. It was an alright activity. If we had a better speaker I'm sure it would have been more interesting. We learned about how Kabblah makes your life better but not about how to actually use Kabblah. But I did learn that "The Secret" that was taking over the nation a little bit ago is just Kabbalah. And is sold at the Kabblah center. Okay so we had three hours to kill before we had to be back in Bat Yam to meet up for our siyyur. Since we were already in town we didn't want to go home. I went with Jessica, Kai, Joe, Julia, and Nicola to the mall to grab lunch. After which Joe and I separated to go to Rabin Square. After asking for directions many times we take a lovely walk through Tel Aviv and end up at Rabin Square where we see Ami (madrich) and Leah. Leah, Joe and I go get an ice aroma at Aroma and then return to Ami. Joe and Ami start playing frisbee. I later join and we continue to pass the frisbee while waiting for everyone to join the siyur (we didn't need to return to bat yam). Everyone arrives about a 1/2 hr late but we got a private talk from Ami about Yitzhack Rabin's assassination, Nov 4, 95. Ami related his own personal memories of when he and his community found out while he was a child playing baseball. He remembers the reactions of the adults around him rather than his own thoughts. I don't remember what happened, only that it was Talya's 2nd bday. Afterwards, we walked to the Tel Aviv Opera House. It was just like any other theatre but we got to go on and back stage. It was fun and I miss being back/on stage. After that Katie, Leah and I leave to go on a hunt for some art shop for Leah. After not finding it we return home.
Tomorrow I'm going on a siyyur to the Dialogue in the Dark. I don't know what to expect really but it should be interesting.
Oh and tonight as Jessica and I were leaving to go get frozen yogurt in Tel Aviv we are spooked by a porcupine in our path. I might have yelled like a little girl. and then walked into a man who asked us what was wrong and all we could manage was our giggling and then we saw james who didn't understand us either. so yeah....tel aviv is cool
And sadly violence hit Bat Yam today. There was a drive by shooting between gangs involving drugs. One man died and another was critically injured. I was at the Ulpan building with Jessica and Julia, laying out in the sun listening to music before a class when we heard the shots. we didn't know what we had heard but later, when we had heard the news we knew where we were when it occurred.
Mom don't freak out.
Okay so i dont' know how to end this one,