Israel Update

You’ll probably want to read over this post

Though maybe not…it’s really up to you. For those of you new to my blog, and for those of you who have been, perhaps…skimming, the following information (I think) is slightly relevant if you want to be up to date and caught up and on the same page as everyone else, then I recommend you take the time to read it…unless you like existing in a state of confusion, then by all means, don’t let me stop you (and I mean that seriously, far be it from me to cause anyone discomfort):

“You gotta make your own breaks…” – Bon Jovi

As of a couple of months ago, I’ve been approved to make Aliyah to Israel by the Jewish Agency. Due to navigating the numerous bureaucratic organizations that I have to go through to make this work as smoothly as possible (hahaha…yeah…smoothly…that’s one word for it…), the date that I’m making Aliyah is moving from February 1, 2008 to December 26, 2007.

Yes, I will be a dual citizen with Israel and the United States. No, this isn’t just for a year of study. Yes I’m planning on living ‘there’ (in Tel Aviv more specifically). No I have no idea for how long. Yes, it’s a minimum of three years due to contractual obligations I have with grant giving organizations who are assisting in funding me. No I don’t know if this is a ‘forever thing’…I don’t write endings and I have no idea what tomorrow will bring.

Yes I have to serve in the IDF. Yes I choose two years of service over six months of service because I felt it was the right thing to do. Yes, I could be shot…but theoretically, that can happen anywhere…actually, it happened to the guy who got shot and killed in front of my car in Buffalo, so there you go.

No I’m not worried about my safety. No I can’t come home if it gets dangerous. No I won’t come home if it gets dangerous: you don’t go out with your hands up. As any proud Islander will tell you: you never abandon ship just because you find yourself caught in a storm and you’re taking on water…you navigate it and deal.

School & Life

My degree is a B.A. in Linguistics in the Applied Linguistics track. For the rest of my CV which has all of my other certifications, you can find it here. I’m receiving it from the University at Buffalo. I have studied under Dr. Jeri J. Jaeger, Dr. Wolfgang Wölk, (soon to be) Dr. Scott Paauw, Dr. Karin Michelson and many other leaders in our field both past and present. I’m incredibly proud of the education that I’ve received at UB despite my headaches with the administration.

Everyone always asks questions of me in some sort of finality “what are you going to do with your life…”

The answer is very simple: I don’t know.

I don’t know…I don’t want to know either. That book – my biography – I get to write that with my actions. I don’t get to predict it and I don’t want to try. I’m not perfect, and I’d hate to live in a world where I didn’t have room to make mistakes; what torture, what intolerable cruelty to have no room to figure life out by trying, and to figure out what doesn’t work in the same manner.

There are no endings, endings are impossible…even the ‘greatest’ ending is nothing more than an entrance into something we don’t yet understand…endings only happen in their ability to create a new stage of existence; even if the Sun were to explode tomorrow, it would be the creation of a new universal orchestration and the planets would turn in a new pattern. My friend died this week…it is not the end, but the beginning of her next journey and the beginning of mine in navigating a world without her. I’m finishing my degree and ‘ending’ my undergraduate education that births the next stage in my life where I get to fulfill my dream of being a total nomad and the beauty of exisentitalism is that if it doesn’t work for me I have the ability to redefine myself in a second and it’s not hypocritical…it’s coming to a new, higher, understanding of who I am.

I have no idea what I will be doing for the rest of my life. I have no idea what will ‘become’ my career. I have no idea who I’ll marry (though if Tyron Leitso is looking I’ll be more than happy to end his search and check that mark off my life’s ‘to do’ list and his here and now).

I have vague ideas, hopes, aspirations, wishes, desires. I want to study and learn both Hebrew and Arabic to such an unparalleled fluency that one day (even if it’s after I’m dead) I will be seen as an expert in both those languages…this is not an un-accomplishable task…it just requires years of study. I want to write in both of those languages. I want to use the knowledge of both of those languages to do good work. Not something breathtaking and large but something small, something measurable, something that makes a difference…teaching children, volunteering with Doctors Without Borders. Using the skills my father taught me as a carpenter to build houses for those who need them. I want to work as a writer and as a translator and I want to be happy and I want to live my life.

But the bottom line is that I’m 23, I have no debt, I have no boyfriend (unless Tyron Leitso is in the market for one in which case, consider me taken), and I have essentially little to no belongings. I want to go to Papua New Guinea and learn Tok Pisin for two years just to say “I did that” and I want to hang out with Lamas in Tibet and I want to dance with men in Columbia and use the two words I know very well in Spanish in Panama (Beseme & Mas Cerveza) and at some point I know that I want to ‘settle down’ (and oh how I hate that word, because the only time I plan on ‘settling’ is when I’m six feet under) in Tel Aviv with a wonderfully handsome, smart, witty, husband whose smile I can get lost in so quickly that I loose all sense of time.

But of all the things going on in my life right now (and there are many) the thing I’m not worried about is making it. I know where I am, I know where I want to be (or at least, I think I know where I want to be) and once you’ve plotted those two points on your map…then you just have to walk the natural path that’s made to get to one point from the other

And if all else fails…I’ll open up a Coffee Shop/Bookstore/Yoga Studio and be incredibly, incredibly happy (not to mention caffeinated, well read, and toned).

…going over this section…it’s long…but that’s probably because I’ve been asked the same question, about 400 different ways, starting since Monday.

“Come out of the circle of time and into the circle of love.” –

I have Two Months, One Day left in this Country…I have a lot of work that has to get done, and I have a lot of people that I need to visit and say goodbye to…and more information on that will be posted later.

However, Scott is out this week…which means I’m Teaching 315 all by myself, which means I need some sleep before Class Tomorrow.

A real post later today.

Peace all!