Thursday, March 04, 2004

Check out the March 4, 12:12 am posting on Protocols. Apparently, Rabbi Adam Mintz did not read my February 16 posting about how to avoid being misquoted by reporters.

A few odds and ends:

- It’s Thursday night and I have no Shabbat plans. If anyone in or near Katamon/the German Colony wants to invite me for a meal, send an email to

- I thought I had found someone to rent my apartment over Pesach, but she cancelled. If you are coming to Israel for Pesach and want to rent my apartment in Jerusalem, write to It’s basically a very spacious studio (but the kitchen is a separate room). There’s one bed, but I can put in a cot. So if you are a single, or one adult coming with a small child, or a couple who doesn’t mind a cot, please write to me. The apartment is just south of Old Katamon.

- From the Things My Shaliach Never Told Me file: Purim is around the corner, and the malls and supermarkets are all selling pre-packaged Mishloach Manot. Costumes are being sold everywhere. At the (kosher) Burger King at the Hadar Mall, you can get a piece of a princess costume with every kid’s meal. The local makolet (Hebrew for “bodega”) has been selling hamantashen for the last month. The radio is playing Purim songs. It’s all so fun! This is my first Purim in Israel, and I love it!

- From the Things My Shaliach Never Told Me file: This is also going to be my first year celebrating Purim on Shusan Purim. In most of the world, Purim will be on Sunday. But in Jerusalem and Tzfat, it will be on Monday. I’m trying to arrange to go to Ari and Sarah Beth’s seudah, outside of Jerusalem, on Sunday, and then another one on Monday – two days of Purim! I’m so excited!

- This week I had a meeting with a rabbi to talk about what I should do about Second Day Yom Tov when I go to the U.S. for Pesach. This is my first time leaving Israel since my Aliyah in July, so I’ve never encountered this before. Fancy this: For Purim I get an extra day. But on Pesach, while everyone else is celebrating two days of Yom Tov, I only have one! Hot diggity dog. It will make the second seder more complicated; I’ll sit with my family, but since it’s not a mitzvah for me to have the second Seder, I have to be careful not to say some of the blessings, not to lean while I eat, that sort of thing. It’s all very interesting.

- Last night. Fourth date in 11 days. Definitely not “shayach.” I’m getting depressed about this.

- Two nights ago I hosted a little dinner party for some of my friends from Ulpan. It was so great to see them. In attendance were Eduardo and Regina (Brazil); Bar Pinchas (Holland); Phillipo (Italy); Luba (FSU); and Toby (U.S.). I discovered that hosting a mid-week dinner is really nice, because you can invite people who live far away, and there’s no issue about washing the dishes right away. It was really nice.

- Last night, before the date, I saw a tax advisor to deal with my American taxes. We also spoke about a long-term plan for minimizing the taxes I have to pay to Israel. Lots of paperwork to do. It was a little overwhelming. In the U.S., when I spoke with Linda Katz (my awesome, awesome H & R Block representative; for anyone who lives in New York, she’s at the office on West 72nd Street in Manhattan), I always understood what she said to me. I mean, I’m no tax expert, but being that I’ve been filling out U.S. tax returns on my own for the last 9 years, I understand the basic concepts. Here, the tax advisor, who is a registered CPA in both Israel and the US, was trying to explain to me how the tax system works here, and it all went over my head. I wanted to cry. It’s so hard to be an immigrant and feel so lost!

- Please write comments. I love the interaction with readers. And have a Shabbat shalom.

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