Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Shalom, dear reader,

The emails you are about to read tell a story about an office worker in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and  a couple who have made aliyah  to Maale Adumim, Israel.

In this blog, I present both Tuvia and Shloimy as fiction characters. Yes, Tuvia is a real person--but here, I have fictionalized him. He has made aliyah with his wife, and Shloimy--a former employee whom Tuvia has mentored-- remains behind in Pittsburgh, working and leading his own life.

Now that Tuvia is no longer at work, Shloimy is curious. He asks about Tuvia's aliyah.

 Tuvia responds.

Shloimy  asks simple, direct questions--which you do not see. What you see are Tuvia's responses, as he impatiently and at times incredulously tries to explain what his new life is like.

Why do I fictionalize these characters (especially Tuvia), and present them this way?

To entertain and to teach.  After all, going to a different culture can be difficult and frustrating. But life is all about choices. So the new oleh can react to what's new and different by getting angry, or by laughing.

So here we see both.

My fictionalized Tuvia gets angry.

The reader gets a chance to laugh.

And poor Shloimy gets an education.

Through this story, I hope you will get a fresh look at the experiences of a new oleh.

My goal is to proceed according to 'themes', including: weather reports, a photo album of Maale Adumim, business tips, transportation, language lessons, food,  religion and politics, and living on the edge (of the desert).

I will try to do this in 'Parts'. Part one will be 'weather reports'.  Part two will be a photo album, etc. Unless otherwise specified, all photos are taken from my apartment, in our neighborhood, or walking home from shopping.

I don't know if this architecture will work out the way I envision it, because a blog does have limitations, and I cannot claim that I can squeeze this concept into the blog format.

Because I write according to themes (and not in chronological order), all blog dates you see are artificial; only dates embedded in text are accurate.

Finally, I do not claim I will stay 'in character', and always use the fictionalized voice of this self-important and grumpy 'Tuvia'.

Maybe, I'll leave it up to you to decide which is the fictionalized 'Tuvia' and which is the real 'Tuvia'.


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