18 February 2013

What They Didn't Tell You ... Before Making Aliya

What Nefesh V'Nefesh and the Jewish Agency didn't tell you, BEFORE you made Aliya:

Fact One
Your children will be Israeli. A small detail but important. Not only will they be first-generation sabras, they will laugh at your Hebrew, correct your grammar and wonder why you demand they use such words as “please” and “thank you.”
Fact Two
Within five years, your Hebrew will not get better, but your English will become worse. You will be unable to speak any language correctly before 8.30 a.m. Hint — invest in a good spell checker.
Fact Three
If you are English, South African, Australian or just overweight, you will be considered American by Israelis. I made aliya from England to become an american, or “anglo.”
Fact Four
Forget ulpan; Israelis will speak English to you.
Fact Five
Hebrew doesn’t sound right when spoken with an English accent.
Fact Six
Within five years you will not be able to wait in a line. Elbows will have never-before-thought-of uses.
Fact Seven
You will look at your bank statement to check how much you don’t have in your account. The larger your overdraft the more successful the aliya. The statement “the way to make a small fortune in Israel is to come with a big one” will become less funny as reality sinks in.
Fact Eight
If you make aliya in your twenties you will have endless friends staying with you from abroad, having discovered cheap accommodation in Israel. Within ten years they will have forgotten you. Search in the David Citadel Hotel, you will find them there.
Fact Nine
Cars are taxed at 100%, Cadbury’s chocolate just isn’t the same in Israel and EastEnders is two weeks behind Britain. (Americans just remember the 100%.)
Fact Ten
You will wear sandals for five years, feeling like a combination of a Sabra and Jesus, only to realise that there are more comfortable options.
Fact Eleven
News from other countries will become inane.
Fact Twelve
Within five years you will “tut” instead of saying no, and you will drive in a way you would never believe.
Fact Thirteen
You will shout at a traffic cop. I promise you, you will.
Fact Fourteen
Despite all of the above, your children will be Jewish and will have a sense of pride. You will walk the roads where Jewish prophets and kings once walked. You will celebrate Jewish holidays and walk streets named after mega-Jews — not saints. You will become a part of Jewish history as it unfolds and, as an Israeli, you will be a Jew — not Jewish.

Source: Times of Israel


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