US Israel Center Internship - Week 3

July 7, 2014
by Jamie Weisman

Hi again. I can't believe it's been 3 weeks since we've arrived in Tel Aviv. It feels simultaneously like we've been here for much longer and also like we just arrived. As far as my Hebrew goes, it feels like we just arrived (unfortunately.) It's not that I don't want to learn- because I do. And I'm trying. But everyone here speaks such great English and is so willing to do so. It makes it hard to learn. On a separate note, Vance and I have tried a lot of the restaurants in Tel Aviv, but we still feel like we haven't scratched the surface. The flavors on the foods here never cease to excite me. Eating here is just so much fun. So many restaurants to try and so little time…

My internship at Netafim is going well. I feel like I've been working there for a long time, since everyone instantly welcomed me into the office. A typical day for me looks like this: Wake up, get ready for work, grab a Tel-o-Fun Green Bike, ride to work down the boulevards (I really look forward to this part!), work in an office with a couple other interns/consultants, then ride home, go to a yoga class, then I have dinner with Vance and/or my sister and her friends (who live here in Tel Aviv.) We've also been really into the World Cup. As far as work goes, I am mainly working on strategic marketing projects, all of which are very interesting and allow me to apply a lot of the things I've learned at school. I've had a chance to visit the two Kibutzim where Netafim operates, one in the North and one in the South. I've always wanted to visit a Kibutz, and this was a great opportunity to do so. The heat, especially on the Kibutzim, can be a bit rough. It's very hot and humid and I have never been so thankful for the air conditioning inside. I long for San Diego weather again. But I love the life here in Tel Aviv and I appreciate the feeling that no matter what the hour, there is something fun going on. Overall, I am settling into my routine and really enjoying my time here.

Here are some random photos that display things I've encountered during my time here so far…

1. Fixing the Tel-o-Fun bikes… Vance mentioned in his post last week that they break down sometimes. Good to know they're trying to stay on top of that.

2. Bathrooms are located upstairs of the bar or restaurant, usually. Here is a view from up top of a cool bar we visited. The bar snacks at this place were sunflower seeds (in shell) and also arugula leaves with lemon juice, salt and pepper.

3. On every door there is a Mezuzeh.

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4. The beach life, especially on Shabbat (Saturdays) is especially lively. People blasting music, swimming, hanging out with families, playing paddle ball…

Here's the beautiful Mediterranean sea, soon to be swarmed with jelly fish, so we hear. Vance and I went stand up paddle boarding (aka SUPing) and saw a few of the jelly fish already!

5. My sister and I at the Jerusalem light show a couple weeks back.

6. Can you spot something…off about this photo?

Cats here seem to sleep all day in strange places, and hunt for mice all night.

7. A dog adoption center just on a sidewalk in Tel Aviv. Everyone is allowed to pet, hold play with the puppies. And adopt if they wish. The adoption process is much easier here than in the States.

Vance and I have some fun things planned for this coming week including a dinner at a "blind" restaurant (more on that later), and a possible trip to the Dead Sea! More on that in next week's post…