Start of Year 3 in Israel

I have arrived in Israel for the 3rd straight year. If you had told me in 2005 that upon graduating college I would spend 27 of the next 36 months in Israel I would have never believed it. Yet here I am, on a  team called Beer Yaakov. The city is right outside of Tel Aviv and is very close to all sorts of interesting places. That does not matter to me as much as it normally would because I am car-less this year. Yes, my time in Haifa was so disastrous that I could not even sign a contract that included a vehicle. So it goes. The silver lining is that I won’t have to pay for gas anymore, which was where like half my paychecks went last year. Continue reading “Start of Year 3 in Israel”

Community Service/Labor Talks

The whole team went up to this spot in the mountains today as part of a league wide community service event.  We got introduced to a crowd of what looked to be a bunch of freshman and sophomores, listened to a speech by our coach, and then played a game against some of the students.  It turned out to be pretty fun.  When we made our entrance to the gym the place exploded like some teeny boppers at a Bieber concert.  My theory is that they were just happy to be anywhere other than the classroom, but they were pretty god damn enthusiastic whatever the case. Continue reading “Community Service/Labor Talks”

Another Trip to the Army Base

I was informed a few weeks ago that I needed to go back to the army base in Haifa.  Apparently the team manager had called the army to check in me and another player to see what our status was. I felt this was unnecessary to begin with.  Why call them before they contact us?  If I’m not on their radar at the moment why make waves?  Maybe they would just forget all about me if I kept a low enough profile.  This strategy worked flawlessly when applied to my relationships with professors in college, so maybe the same thing would work out here. I suppose college professors can’t thrown you into jail and ship you off to die if you don’t participate, so there might be some merit in keeping the army abreast of your whereabouts. Continue reading “Another Trip to the Army Base”

Summer Recap/Back In Israel

Quick recap of my summer:

I spent May just kind of putzing around doing nothing other than working out with my brother and shooting at the high school.  This actually could be a pretty complete recap of my summer as a whole.  A lot of working out in my front yard, shooting at my high school and watching TV with JD and Catie.  But there were some other interesting things.  I started playing with a semi pro team in the IBL called the LA Lightening.  I was very lukewarm to the idea at first, especially after not playing that much in my first game.  But after a while I got comfortable, the other PG left, and I had my best and most fun stretch of basketball in a long time.  Granted a lot of the teams we played were complete garbage, but there were some pretty solid squads in there too.  Some notable people on my team: Continue reading “Summer Recap/Back In Israel”

Visit to the Army Base

Today I had my first experience with the Israeli army.  I had to pick up my teammate Rave (pronounced Rah-Veh)promptly at 7:50 AM and then head out to Haifa to start the days festivities.  Rave is a great guy but his English needs a lot of work.  As we were driving he told me that most soldiers have to be at the base an hour earlier, but he has a “connecticut” with someone in charge that buys him some time. Continue reading “Visit to the Army Base”

Almost Burned Down My Apartment

Last night I had a harrowing experience, but to figure out how it all started I have to go back a little bit.  As I am sure I have mentioned before, my room is cold.  Like wear a sweat shirt, pants, socks, sleep underneath 3 blankets, use a space heater and still feel like you are in an igloo cold.  (Come to think of it, maybe part of the reason behind my surge in weight was my body reacting in order to insulate itself.)  I knew that these temperatures would stay roughly the same at least through February, so while I was home I purchased an electric blanket.  I know I could have just waited until I got back and bought one here, but I am lazy and my mom was paying.  As I said last post, the blanket did not work.  I now think that the problem was I was not using my converter plug, I was only trying it with the basic European adapters.  I am not positive this was the problem, but I am pretty pissed I didn’t get to at least try to find out before disaster struck. Continue reading “Almost Burned Down My Apartment”

Trip to Jerusalem/ Update

I think it was the 4th day of my dad’s trip that we slated as our day to spend in Jerusalem.  Our sightseeing up to that point had consisted of seeing the Bahai Gardens in Haifa.  Unless you count looking out the window on the drive from the airport as a cultural experience, my dad and I had not accomplished much in terms of seeing this ancient, famous country.  Thus, that Sunday we woke up early and headed off for the Holy City. Continue reading “Trip to Jerusalem/ Update”