Friday, August 26, 2016

Observing

Being a Type A person,  it is a bit weird to wake up every day and not have a solid schedule in place. Don't get me wrong, every day there are certainly things to get done, but for awhile we will be lacking a consistent schedule.


So until I fully figure out what my job situation will be, I see my basic responsibilities as:

1. Settling us into our new home - this includes stocking up on groceries which has been incredibly daunting so far.
2. Training our dog. At 9 months she is well-trained but we would love to consistently have her off leash; therefore I spend a chunk of every day working with her on that. 
3. Learning basic Hebrew. It very quickly became clear that I should know at least the basics out of sheer politeness.
4. Figuring it out. Let's dig into this one.

My sense of direction has been absolutely turned upside down here in the Holy Land, outside of knowing which way the beach is. Therefore I would define figuring it out as literally wandering around. Slowly learning where the nearest grocery store is, the best cafes, which juice stand is the cheapest. Observing. Plugging my headphones in, throwing on my backpack and simply trotting around with a dazed American look on my face. 

One thing I quickly observed, and fell in love with: Israelis seem to give very little sh*ts about rules. 

Exhibit A: The Beach

From what I can tell, dogs aren't allowed at the beach, unless you're at the specific dog beach.  I started laughing on my morning run earlier this week as I witnessed dogs literally everywhere.  Granted, it was earlier in the morning and I'm not sure that would fly during prime hours, but in short people seem to take their dogs everywhere and anywhere, regardless of what the signs actually say.

However we did find the actual dog beach and Kai has never been happier


(& I absolutely cannot read Hebrew, but I'm thinking a dog with a big X through it means no dogs)

Exhibit B: Scooters

Traffic within the actual city of TLV is kind of insane and once our car gets here (which at this rate most likely won't be until December) I'm not sure I would even be brave enough to drive it within the city. Drivers are aggressive and horn-happy, but beyond that, the scooters are TERRIFYING.  They do whatever they want, always.  On the sidewalks, going the wrong way, weaving between lanes, you name it.

Exhibit C:  Socializing

In summary, it seems that any hour is happy hour.  I'm constantly finding myself questioning if the entire country is on vacation ALWAYS, as bars restaurants and cafes are fully populated at ALL hours of the day and night.  I see business men in suits sipping on beers at 11 AM on a Tuesday, and just this morning while letting Kai out at 6 AM walked past several girls on their way home from bars/clubs.

Walk by any beach any night of the week, and there are enough BBQ's and picnics going on to make us wonder if it's a Jewish holiday we were unaware of (which is not outside of the realm of possibility).

Exhibit D: Graffiti

It's everywhere; it's like a social norm for there to be graffiti on a building, not a big deal at all.  It's grown on me quickly - I'm a big fan of some of the quotes I've seen so far...



I'll stop with the examples, but have plenty more if you're interested.  In short, my observation is that there are simply less sh*t's given in this country - certainly less political correctness, no tip toeing around, more laid back about a lot of stuff.  You say and do what you feel... and I kind of like it.

So the point of why I'm babbling about this observation is; I think that I need to somewhat apply this Israeli mindset to myself as I wander around Tel Aviv trying to figure it all out.  If I hand the cashier the wrong amount of money (which I have) or order the completely wrong kind of drink at the cafe (yesterday) - oh well.  Drink it, move on.

One cafe gives you chocolate every time you order  :)
Happy Friday, hope you had an awesome week!  And if you didn't - forget it, and move on.

Cheers -
Kait


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