When I first moved to Israel, I had a list of things I’d ask people to bring; things I thought I NEEDED to live…they were, I realized over the years, silly things.
I needed onion powder because the onion powder in Israel seems to clump with moisture in a very short period of time.
I still ask people to bring it when they can, use more fresh onions, and occasionally use the Israeli brands. I don’t NEED it from America…but it’s always nice to have.
I needed tuna…the Israeli brand seemed awful – now they sell the same American brand I used in the States and it’s priced pretty reasonably.
I needed American peanut butter…now they sell Skippy here, but I prefer the Israeli brand for cooking (it’s healthier and blends better with other ingredients).
I needed…I’m not really sure what else. I loved Entenmann’s cakes in America…I still do…but the last time I had it here, I felt this chemical taste and realized that Israeli foods use so much less chemicals.
Time to market is faster here – the market is so much closer and smaller, and so it seems shelf life is shorter.
Whatever the manufacturing reasons, I’ve learned to bake what I need or buy what I need here.
When we first came, Heinz ketchup was rare and a fortune – we used Osem. After a time, my husband brought me a bottle of Heinz and my kids thought it was too spicy.
I was a fanatic ketchup user in my youth…but truthfully, I don’t NEED Heinz…though I still like it.
After 20 years here, I’m left with two things they just don’t have here. I can live without both of them…but how I miss them…what I figure is that if the only thing I lack from America comes to these two things, I’m not doing to badly.
I love so much about this country, I can live with the fact that there are two things I had in America that I really can’t get (or get enough of) here.
The first is Sunday. Oh, I want a day where I can sleep late and then get up and go traveling. I miss Sundays; I really do.
Sometimes, I steal a day for myself…I go where I want; do what I want.
Considering I’ve spent the better part of the last three months since my operation not working…I really shouldn’t complain, but there’s something so wonderful about the concept of a Sunday. Maybe it’s the guilt-free part.
And the second thing that has been missing from my life for so long is snow. I love snow. I love rain…but I love snow.
And today…after so many years in Israel, I was like the silliest kid on the train.
I took picture after picture after picture…and the funny part was hearing that same Android click from all over the train.
There are few more beautiful places in the world – than Jerusalem in the snow.Paula Stern
About the Author: Paula R. Stern is CEO of WritePoint Ltd., a leading technical writing company in Israel. Her personal blog, A Soldier's Mother, has been running for more than 5 years. She lives in Maale Adumim with her husband and children, a dog, too many birds, and a desire to write.The author's opinion does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Jewish Press.
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