Sunday/Monday – Day 108/109

November 19, 2012

I honestly am trying to get back up to date so that my posts aren’t so anachronistic but with all the excitement at Penn, combined with the intense workload, I’m not sure how soon I’ll get there!

I wish I could’ve slept in today, but it just wasn’t possible, with a giant four person group project due. I had to build my own Operating System for Operating Systems (CIS380) and boy was it time-consuming. However, it was incredibly enjoyable, up to the point where some group members didn’t manage to pull their weight entirely (though this came later).  I was up at 9AM meeting in my neighbors room to hack away at the project and managed to make a good amount of progress. This continued for a good number of hours. In fact, I managed to lose most of the day to it! The rest of the afternoon was uninteresting as I assembled various parts of other assignments into submittable work. Including plenty of hard work on physics.

Monday was slightly more successful as by now I’d had a little extra sleep. Finally a little recovery. Algorithms today was a breeze, given by a guest lecturer who didn’t exactly speak passable English. After that it was off to work again, this week I spent much of my spare time coding up the ‘scheduler’ for the ‘kernel’ of the operating system. I was pleased in the evening to finally get back to regular Glee rehearsals but to my disappointment, much of the rest of semester would be focused on holiday music, specifically carols. And, whilst I don’t mind the odd carol, learning twenty of them and singing them over and over doesn’t really fit what I really want to be doing. Also being Jewish, a few of them have lyrics that are a little awkward to sing, along the lines of “the king over Jews is born!”.

After rehearsal, it was the usual back to my room punctuated with a Glee interview (and for the life of me I can’t remember who I interviewed then, though I feel very guilty about it). Then it was to work for the usual, and the usual late night before sleep. Some of my life needs to be a little less exciting. Good for contrast.

Monday/Tuesday – Day 20/21

August 8, 2012

Here it is! 3 weeks away! Not really missing home yet, far too much excitement and seeing Adi is wonderful.

For the last few days I have been studying hard, in the areas of algorithms, data structures and programming. I have an interview coming up that could make quite a difference and so I’m sacrificing a little fun time for a great potential benefit!

Monday saw me at my cousin’s birthday in a more religious area of Jerusalem, Givat Shaul. For those of you who haven’t been to Israel this means a rather stark difference from what many of you will have experienced otherwise in travel. The entire neighborhood is dressed modestly, commonly in black, white and bland colours. The advertisements are specifically targeted to cater to the population and feature very few women and if so, in household situations.  The food is all kosher and everything closes early Friday afternoon, with nothing at all open on Saturday. The roads close and the streets fill with people on the way to meals and synagogue.

After my stay there it was back to the boys apartment in Tel Aviv where I engaged in some applied research into wireless security protocols, much to their excitement. Apparently programming is cool, who knew?

Also today marked the beginning of ‘The Two Towers’, as I felt it was necessary that Sarah, who considers herself somewhat nerdy, to be inducted into the full trilogy and was somewhat horrified that she hadn’t seen them all already.

My camera has run out of battery and I left the charger in Jerusalem so it may be another day till photos appear.

Monday – Day 13

August 2, 2012

Monday morning was somewhat similar to the day, with a good sleep in to start the day and a good chunk of time just spent chilling with Ariel and Gali. However, in the afternoon we decided to catch the bus into Tel Aviv central and from there walk to Neve Tzedek, the first and most beautiful neighborhood of Jerusalem.

Since it’s founding in the early 1900s by new olim (immigrants, including my family) Neve Tzedek has become something of an artist’s colony, replete with galleries and gelaterias.

From Left: Ariel, Gali, Sarah


Us outside the old railway station

We walked down through the entire neighborhood, eventually coming to rest at the old train station, no longer in use. Now the site hosts a few restaurants, an exhibition or two, and much to Sarah’s excitement, a wooden mind games shop. With a look of delight in her face, she stopped to play and attempt to solve all manner of wooden puzzles, staying for a good twenty minutes. Additionally, in the courtyard was a piano, horribly out of tune but painted interestingly which I banged around on for a few minutes.


Cool Piano in Neve Tzedek

From there I led the way, roughly in the direction where I believed a special building to me lay. After about five minutes I found it! My great grandfathers house, complete with a plaque marking the place, and though I had been there before I took the mandatory photo in front of it as below.


The house of Shlomo and Rivka Abulafia

After that it was time to quickly find dinner before Ariel and Gali had to go home before army the next day. We settled on a little sushi shop and sat at the bar. After that I walked home to sleep for another day. The floor was not too comfortable.



© 2012-2024 Shaanan Cohney