Happy new year!

Photo from photography class

Like Christmas, New Year’s Eve is sort of a non-event here since Jews celebrate the Jewish new year in September. It was a low-key night for us; our friend Dave came from Jerusalem and we went with him to a small gathering of Jerusalem folks for a little while upstairs in our building.

I also had a nice long conversation with Mary back in Little Rock yesterday – great to hear her voice and get caught up.

The big news of the week was our pack-out. We spent last Monday getting organized for the movers to come on Thursday. We pretty much sent everything in the apartment except for my clothes, a couple of rugs and linens for the guest room. The Embassy brought us a “welcome kit,” which has very basic dishes, pans, linens, iron, TV, etc. – I’ll live with these things until I leave. The strangest part is not having any art on the wall. It will be weird, but it’s also kind of fun – at least for now. I’m sure it will grow old after a few weeks!

Friday was admin day in ACS, so we didn’t see clients. It’s a great day for getting caught up on those things you don’t normally have time to do. ACS also has a great tradition of having breakfast together on admin days – they bring salads, baked eggs, hummus, bourekas (stuffed phyllo dough pastries) and all kinds of yummy things to eat. Baked eggs taste and look like boiled eggs, but they are put in the oven and the oven is turned on low heat before Shabbat begins; they cook all night and are taken out of the oven the next morning – all of this can be accomplished without violating the rules about turning on electricity. (In our building, we have a Shabbat elevator. On Shabbat, it goes on auto-pilot and stops on each floor, so our Jewish neighbors don’t have to push the button.)

Here’s some of the ACS gang taken during our outreach trip a few weeks ago: Gaby, Johnny, Marjatta, Juan, Efraim our warden, and Nadia.

ACS Crew during outreach to Bet Shemesh










We were sad to lose our second kitty yesterday – her parents returned from their vacation, so we had to give her back. What a cutie – she really made us laugh with her kitten antics. Even Flavie put up with her – aside from a few hissing matches, Flavie ran from her or tried to ignore her. Luckily, Bill and Diane have granted us visitation rights to see her!

Fizzgig, our temporary cat

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