Saturday, September 20, 2008

Tuesday and Wednesday

Tuesday - Another somewhat crazy day. Maybe I don't need more hours in the day, maybe I need more minutes in the hour. The sad thing about Jonah's new Gan is that he is only there until 1:30. Which means if I want to accomplish anything, it has to be done by 1:30. That's probably fine if it is something to do in Ariel but if I need to leave the city, it's a bit of a stretch. B'EH soon we will have friends that Jonah can go home with (and we can return the favor) and it won't be such an issue. But right now it's a problem because we are trying to get things done!!
Tuesday was shopping day. Shu and I both took Jonah to Gan and he was less than thrilled to go. He started getting really nervous when we were leaving so I told Shu to stay while I took Sammy for his first day of daycare. Now, under normal circumstances, I would not have sent Sammy. He had a cold and a slight fever. We had given him Acomoli but it really wasn't the ideal first day for him. However, we had SO much to do and things take infinitely longer and are that much harder when Sammy joins us for a shopping trip. Turns out, for the first day, they really prefer the mother stays for a while and the kid only stays until 12 (as opposed to 4) and so we decided to just keep him with us.
We got a ride to the Rosh Ha'Ayin train station where my in-laws picked us up and off we headed to Tel Aviv. Got a bit lost but eventually made it to Herzl Street where there are a lot of furniture showrooms (I guess?). Now, as an American - you think of a furniture showroom and you think of a place like ArtVan (not sure if they have it outside of Detroit). But basically, a HUGE fancy store with a bunch of fake rooms all furnished and looking beautiful. And you walk around and see prices, hear about payment plans, and make your purchase.
Well, this is not the case on Herzl Street. Basically, it's a bunch of hole in the wall shops, stuffed end to end with furniture). One had some mattresses and a few bed frames, another was the size of a public restroom and just had closets lining the walls. For those of you who don't know, Israeli homes and apartments generally do NOT come with closets. They are not built in. So you have to buy a 3-6 door external closet. It's a pain but the truth is, it store infinitely more than a regular closet does. And you can configure them how you want. How much hanging space, how many drawers, how many shelves.
So there are a ton of these stores and we had no clue where to start. We just started walking into places and asking prices, delivery fees, etc. We have been told that NO ONE ever pays sticker price and we must bargain. But none of us are really any good at that. And so we just took the price they gave us and said ok, fine. It was hard to do research beforehand because we really didn't know what we wanted. So we were coming in blind and had no idea if we were being ripped off or getting the Deal of the Century! I have noticed in the past that it is no uncommon for Americans to get ripped off. If you look/talk like an American, you may get taken advantage of. I don't know if it's because of this great misconception that all Americans are RICH! Or if it's just the fact that we are in a country where we don't know the language or the culture or anything else. We found a couple closets that seemed to fit our needs and a possible bed and a bunkbed for Jonah and Sammy (that was solid wood and rather pricey). Although I was the minority in our little shopping group, I was really not comfortable with just buying from this place. Because we had no comparison to it. We were not being informed shoppers! Besides, it was time to get Jonah and Sammy needed to nap.
So we left (gulp).
Made it back in time to get Jonah (who survived his rough day). And then we spent the afternoon trying to research furniture and talk to people. I think we might be a little more educated now. :) Anyway, we do have a plan. We're heading to a spot near Petach Tikvah that supposedly has a lot of furniture stores and houseware stores. So we can finally get the houseware items we so desperately need like a broom, bath mat, and garbage cans!!
Oh the other thing about Tuesday was we had a parent/teacher meeting at the Gan. It started at 7:30 and when we got there, we had to find our kid's name on a paper that they decorated for us. Then we got to sit on an itty bitty chair made for 3-4 year olds. I was supposed to sit near some Israelis but luckily I thought to ask Dana (Avi's wife) if she could sit near me and help with the translation. G-d bless!!!! There is NO way I would have had a cloe what the Ganenet (preschool teacher) was saying. I figured, eh, it's a meeting about preschool how hard will it be to understand. But phew!! She was talking fast and there was SO much information. She has BIG plans for our kids, let me tell you. :)
So I didn't get out of there until about 9:30 - whew! And that was Tuesday.

If I remember correctly, Wednesday was uneventful. I got some work done and we had our telephone and internet installed. Hooray! Now we just need the lift to come so we can get our wireless router and we will be Hooked Up! And desks to sit at...and an office chair..... etc. Jonah had a rough time again - when we left him at Gan. And Shu and I were feeling so badly about the situation. We took him out of a Gan where he had friends and was comfortable and now he is in a place where he begs us not to leave him, doesn't speak the language, and doesn't really have friends. :( So the mornings have been rough. But when we pick him up at the end of the day, the teachers always tell us how fantastic he was and how after a minute he stopped crying. And Jonah agrees. He says that he cries and then they give him water and it helps him feel better. So we asked why he cries if he knows he will have a good time and he says he can't help himself, he just feels so sad when we leave him. Awwwww.

Well, that's enough writing for now. Time for sleep. Tomorrow is another Furniture/Housewares shopping day. Wish us luck!!!

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