Living in Israel

My third post will be about the other part of my time in Israel; daily life in Jerusalem. This was the immersive experience quite similar to study abroad, except for a few caveats. I’m going to go into those, and then I will discuss what I enjoyed and learned about Israel.

First of all, I was not living with native Israelis. My program had me living with 17 other Americans and Canadians, and all the people in our program were English speaking orthodox Jewish immigrants to Israel. So we were given a very specific lens to view Jerusalem through, and it was an orthodox, male, English speaking one. And Israel is a more diverse country than just having orthodox English speakers. Also since there was a diversity in peoples’ priorities, we got a different perspective than if they were more similar. For instance, some people went out every night, and I wanted to go to bed early for my job, and other people went to Yeshiva.

That being said, Israel is a very unique and cool place to live. There are so many different cultures and cuisines and languages all blended together in this small place and somehow it works. It works as a country of extremes coexisting with each other-it’s in some ways a very tech savvy and modern country, while at the same time is very religious and traditional. It’s a Jewish country, but incorporates other religions into its culture. People are somehow very rude and discourteous in public, yet will invite you home for a meal if they barely know you. All in all it  was a good place to live for 2 months, and I am thankful for the opportunity provided by the Charles Center to learn there.

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