Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday – Day 239/240/241

Posted on 31st March 2013

Tuesday with the Koloski’s was great again! The goers to synagogue in the morning at the local Chabad institution had their interest aroused by the presence of a new unknown individual in their midst and an Australian at that. An elderly Hungarian cohen was also interested in how such a small boy had a decent sized voice to sing with, and told me that I should come more regularly.

Following that, lunch was back at Aviva’s grandparent’s, and was comprised of some excellent Moroccan fish, alongside some excellent spreads and salads. Absolutely delicious.

The rest of the afternoon was spent both napping and play bananagrams, an old favourite of mine that involves creating crossword like structures from scrabble letters. I didn’t rest until I had won a game against Josh and Jeremy, Aviva’s identical twin brothers, one of whom shared my name as his middle name. Quite exciting.

Seder that night was pretty similar to the one the night before, but was equally as enjoyable. I got even more into it this time as the tunes were now familiar and the people too. We finished even later this night, at around 1:30AM and I was glad to get into bed, waking up a little late for synagogue the next day.

Lunch on Wednesday was Moroccan lamb, something that brought me back to my own grandmother’s cooking and made me feel a little sad I wasn’t back at home with everyone, regardless of the fact that Aviva’s family had made me feel incredibly welcome. Following lunch, Aviva, her mum and I walked over to her friend Michelle’s house and on the way gave me a modern history of Philadelphia. I was quite shocked by some of the neighbourhoods we walked through and the stories of gangs and crime that we told to me. It made me realize quite how lucky I am to live in a place such as Melbourne and in the country of Australia. We really are blessed the way things are at home. Low crime, strong education, healthcare, a sense of enduring mateship that even though it may not seem apparent at home, is definitely put in perspective once overseas. Spending time in Philadelphia reminded me of why I want to live in Melbourne.

A large portion of the conversation at Michelle’s centered around couples marrying and moving off. Very few decided to stay in Philly, understandably, and many were moving to Israel. It was a little sad to hear of a community being so depleted!

After chag ended,  I rang home to tell them of my news from Monday, and they were considerably excited. Possibly even more so than me. I’ve decided to hold off publishing here exactly what it was for another week or so, but needless to say, it was a dream come true. We then drove back to Penn and life resumed as normal.

Wednesday night I was frantically trying to catch up on everything I had missed and the one hundred and forty odd emails I had received in the two days I had missed. Thursday was much the same, albeit the morning contained a physics lecture that I really enjoyed and managed to grasp sufficiently.

The afternoon was work work work, a quick interview, and then office hours from six until midnight. At least I’m slowly building up some savings, despite the various costs associated with Glee Club, my rent and of course, tuition.

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