Thursday, July 5, 2012

Sunny and Hot with a Chance of Sunny and Hotter

Hoo boy.  I grew up in Baltimore, Home of Humidity, so I know a thing or two about hot summers.  But living in Israel is a whole different kettle of gefilte fish.

I remember once when I was about 9 hearing someone say that if you schedule an outside event in Israel, you never have to worry that a sudden rainstorm will ruin your plans because it never rains in the summer.  I remember thinking how weird that was.

I mean, in Baltimore (and I don't have to remind my still-without-power friends and family there) there is always the threat of an afternoon thunderstorm. 

Here, it's like this.  Every. Single. Day. Is. Sunny. And. Hot.  I laugh at the weather report in the morning - I mean what's the point?  They could just play the same thing from April to October and no one would notice.

We started out the summer opening our windows wide every morning because we have a fantastic breeze in our apartment.  We'd leave them open all day. 

Then we noticed something.  Um....the breeze is sure breezy.  But it is also VERY HOT.  So the apartment was full of hot.  BAD.

When I told people about this, they (surprise surprise) laughed at me.  "NONONONONO," said my Ulpan teacher, "you CLOSE the windows in the morning to keep in the cool air from the night, and keep the trisim down all day as well.  Don't let any heat inside! Then in the evening when the sun goes down you can open them up."

Uh HUH, I thought.  DUH - we are really living in a desert, not just a hot place.  This is a totally diffeerent way of thinking about weather.  

Now let's discuss clothing for the desert.  We all remember Charleton Heston doing his Moses thing in the long white cotton robe.  Correct clothing!  I need to find me some of those.

So here we are in our darkened apartment, windows closed, trisim down, ceiling fans swirling, trying to avoid putting on the air conditioning for as long as possible.  Each day we congratulate ourselves for how long we go without a/c - 3:00!  4:00!  4:30!  yay us!

On another note, today in Ulpan we took a practice written test to prepare us for the real one in a few weeks. The teacher gave us the test for levels alpeh/bet/gimel to see how we did.  On Sunday we'll take a practice test for bet/gimel/daled and then we can decide which level we want to take for the real thing.

How was it, you are probably asking me.  Well, you get three stories (one each for each level, so the stories get progressively more difficult).  The scary thing is that for the story for level bet I read the entire thing, knew it was about some sort of foodstuff, but could not for the life of me figure it out until I read it like 3 times.  And that is WITH the picture of the foodstuff itself on the page.  This does not inspire confidence.  (the foodstuff was parsley which is  פטרולוזיה in Hebrew - I mean, can't they just call it פרסלי?)

And the grammar section?  Um...can we talk about something else? World peace?  Anything?

You get the idea.  Oh, well, at least I can open and close my trisim like a pro.

1 comment:

  1. I spend all day in an air conditioned office building, so I don't have the trissim issue. I do keep mine closed when I'm not home all day and then open them up in the evening. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE that it doesn't rain from Pesach to Sukkot. I could live like this forever.
    Also, I think Modiin is much hotter than Jerusalem, we get nice breezes most days.