Step-by-Step: Making Aliyah to Israel

Documenting the very personal process of making Aliyah (immigration to Israel) by one very atypical Israeli-American girl. Aliyah on 17, August, 2005. Roadmap: What do you mean there's no roadmap?! Hang on, we're in for a bumpy ride! Ole!

Saturday, April 29, 2006

It is the online protextia network :) Anyone know of a gifted techie person in Israel who is good with both website design and server configuration? He or she would need to know html, php, javascript, and C++. I need to hire someone to put together a cutting-edge website with interactive features, including blogging ability and an internal wiki, and for the server to be configured to allow for the gathering of survey data via php-based forms.

While this is currently a short-term job for the design of a single website it is quite likely that additional design opportunities would soon be coming his or her way based off the same server. So, if you know somone who is really good with both design and the technical behind-the-scenes specs who is open to some freelance work please have them contact me (or send me their contact info)!!
*********
Yesterday I had so much fun playing hebrew scrabble at Savtadotty's. Here's a pic of me and my scrabble partner Noorster with the evil winning team (yeah we got beaten by a team with a dog, Gucci --so cute!!-- as a member). You can read more about it and see pics of the scrabble board when we finished over at Savtadotty's blog.

Now, I'm off to meet Noorster for some hanging out on the beach and theoretical studying of hebrew! Skin cancer and wrinkles here I come!

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Baby Matan hits adolscence...

and all I can say is his little balls better be big enough. Good l-rd, I got home from ulpan tonight and when I opened the door I was hit with the most indescribable smell. Not the smell of pee exactly (which trust me would be bad enough!) but something far worse. It took me about 2 hours to place the smell as I began frantically looking for the source and simulataneously trying to clean everything in sight on the off chance that whatever it was happened to be under my mop at that moment or under my cloth. But no. Matan has sprayed and G-d only knows where (not any of the places I've cleaned for sure because I'm still about to be knocked over by the potency). Horrors. How did this happen? This morning he was still a baby cat and cute and cuddly and not stinking up my house! Can we say vet, like tomorrow first thing? Castrated kitty is on the menu. Ahhhhhhhh.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

The Israeli Foreign Ministry has launced a new Arab-language website to what a Ynet article says are rave reviews from arabic speakers around the world. Here is a sample quote from the article "The website is organized and rich in information. Arab websites make use of the site to prepare articles about Israel and the Jewish people. This is real information without distortion," an Arab surfer from Europe wrote. The website includes many documents dealing with Jewish and Israeli history, and information about the political system, women's rights, economics, culture, as well as videos. All that in addition to current information about important events related to the Foreign Ministry and information about our relations with neighboring countries such as Jordan and Egypt both now and historically plus (according to the article) a lot more. This gives me inspiration because once I learn hebrew (maybe eventually in my lifetime!) I plan to tackle arabic next because I think it is important to be able to speak with our neighbors in their own language not to mention the nearly 20% of our own population. And after arabic, I'm tackling russian. I gave up on French eons ago.

Speaking of languages, I'm back in ulpan. I'm in Gimmel with Gila (I love Gila!) and the class is large (about 30 or so people). My good friend S is in the class. We all had to do an introduce yourself thing yesterday including telling what you had in your tik, when you made aliyah (or why and how long you've been here otherwise), and your hebrew-learning history. I waited in terror until there were only about 10 people left, my mind a blank but then just did it --and I didn't die. I only made one mistake (it was a number thing and I can't do numbers in any language). I understood pretty much everything she said in the class and most of the things everyone else said.

Today, at 10 a.m. I was on my way back from a meeting, planning to stop and pick up kitty litter at the little shop down the street when the siren went off. It was one of the most emotionally moving experiences for me I've ever had and it was totally unexpected. I knew the siren would go off and I knew that everyone would stop what they were doing and stand for the duration in a moment of silent memory and tribute to the millions who were murdered in the Holocaust. I didn't know how, standing there motionless along with everyone else, with cars stopped on the instant in the middle of the road and the doors flung open and the passengers standing silently beside them, with the world seeming to have suddenly stopped in a frozen moment of pain and of memory and of tribute, I didn't know how deeply I would be effected. I was surprised to discover that tears were streaming down my cheeks. They fell without my moving a muscle to wipe them away until the siren cut off and the world was suddenly, almost jarringly, thrust into motion again.

Finally, my thoughts are bent tonight to the families of those who lost loved ones and friends in the terrorist attacks in Egypt and my wishes for recovery and healing toward those who lie injured.

Monday, April 24, 2006

terrorist attack in Sinai

Heard on the radio coming back from ulpan and our Yom HaShoah ceremony there that there were what seemed like 3 explosions in the Sinai town of Dhahab but when I got home and checked the news sites there was no info at all. A few minutes ago I was playing on my other computer (one not connected to the net) convincing myself I was working when Noorster called. She'd heard from Lisa that there was a major terrorist attack but that because it is kind of a remote place not a lot of info is coming out. Noorster says CNN is reporting 100s injured and an unknown number of casualities. Anyone have more info? Turning on tv now.

9:40 --at least 22 and maybe as many as 100 killed.
Magen David Adom (the israeli emergency medical corp) ambulances are heading to help the Egyptians right now.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Random thoughts from a tired camper

Today was my long workday. Leaving at 9 a.m. for B.S. and getting home after end of the day meetings with students then the train home, the bus, the walk and the stop at the store for food (which I was too tired to prepare) at 11:30. Had a lot of (random) thoughts during my long workday though.

First thought of note came, as I walked along the very pretty and new covered walkway and bridge from the new train station in B.S. to the university while listening to the music they were piping through the speakers mounted every 20 feet or so along its length --I could live here. Look, they are building all kinds of things here and working hard to make this city a real place of culture (or at least comfort) and so forth. See how nice they've made this...

Reality sunk in and I quickly corrected myself to "I should live here." In other words, I had (and on-going) a bit of a zionistic mini-crisis. Living in Tel Aviv is hella fun. There's life and cafes and and friends and things going on constantly so that even if all you are doing is walking down the street or sitting in your apartment you feel like you are in the thick of things. It is a lot like what I love about New York. But better, because there is the beach. Oy, the beach. The weather is also not bad. In short, I love living in Tel Aviv.

But, would I not be more useful and more something or other if I were living in the Negev? Ok so the hip and happening live in Tel Aviv (not that I am claiming to be one of those, just that I benefit from being among them) because it is hip and happening and they don't live in Beer Sheva ...because it is not. But, I said to myself as I waltzed along the covered walkway, if I and other hip and happening people got up and moved to Beer Sheva wouldn't it become, well, more hip and happening? Doesn't someone need to lead the way? Is it not, as part of my patriotic duty as a socialist and a zionist, really necessary that I suffer plant my body and soul where it is most needed to help build this country?

Then, I stepped off the covered walkway into the uncovered sun and...melted. The heat was unbelievable. It is April. We are talking there was no spring we went straight from winter and cold and yucky to frying eggs on the pavement. I was wearing a light longsleeve sweater and carrying a light jacket with me because it was cold in Tel Aviv this morning when I left. It was not cold in Beer Sheva. Nope, not a bit of it. Those little daydreams of working to build up the Negev kinda melted right along with the rest of me. I dunno, I'm still thinking about it but I have the strong, sadly, impression that I am too darn selfish to be a truly good zionist.

On a happy note, I saw lots of girls wearing shorts in the Negev. Yeah, the heat has gotten to their sensibleness and there were lots and lots of shorts in evidence. Like short shorts and knee length shorts. And, gasp, girls were wearing them and not just guys. Maybe the Negev ain't so bad after all.

Tomorrow I will finish my random thoughts if I haven't forgotten them all by then. But no, really I heard a very interesting talk today about the gender effect on the palestinian elections by a palestinian and jewish professor team that I do want to blog about and won't forget. Too tired to do it justice right now.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Remembering the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, 19 April 1943

63 years ago today was the eve of Passover and the 50,000 - 60,000 (out of more than half a million who had been forced into the narrow streets of this confined space) suriving Jews living in the Warsaw Ghetto were slated to be finally and completely annihilated. When the SS troops entered the ghetto to renew the deportations to the death camps, however, they met with unexpected resistance.

Fewer than 500 young fighters, girls and boys --the youngest aged 12 but most in their late teens and early twenties, who were poorly armed and even more poorly trained refused to go to their deaths quietly. Instead they embarked on a desperate and hopeless struggle, none expecting to survive it or even to survive beyond the first day. And yet, on that first day this small group achieved an astonishing victory --the attacked elite SS troops withdrew from the Ghetto in chaos. Not a single Jew was deported from the ghetto on that day. Of course, they returned but twice more were forced to withdraw. Over the next month and a half, the members of the ZOB (Jewish Fighting Organization) fought tenaciously as the Nazis began burning the ghetto to the ground around them and ferreting out the civilians and fighters hidden in their last places of refuge: cramped, crowded and airless underground bunkers.

The entire country of Poland, with its army and air force, capitulated to the Nazis in only 3 weeks. The resistance put up by the Warsaw Ghetto Fighters lasted nearly twice that long.

The Uprising did not end in victory for these brave Jewish fighters. The remaining 60,000 civilians in the ghetto were burned alive, shot, and deported to the gas chambers of Treblinka and Auschwitz. At the end of May, 1943 approximately 120 fighters managed to reach the "Aryan" side of Warsaw --some through a tunnel they had dug (the members from Betar's fighting group) and some through the sewers (Hashomer, Dror, and Bund members). The Betar fighters who tried to escape through the tunnel were denounced by Poles in the area and all were shot and killed. Of the larger group that attempted escape through the sewers, approximately 30 had to be left behind when only one of two escape vehicles arrived to transport the fighters into hiding. As they waited for the second vehicle to arrive they were discovered by the Nazis and all those remaining were killed. The fighters who survived the Ghetto and the subsequent months --in hiding and as they continued their resistance with the polish underground (many were discovered and killed suring this time) --also took part in the 1944 Warsaw Uprising. Only 34 fighters survived the war.

As part of my commemoration of the uprising, I'm adding in biographical and details of the role they played of the known fighters into Wikipedia --surprisingly, there was almost no information about the uprising or any of the fighters save Zuckerman, Edelman, and Anielewicz. Zivia Lubetkin and Simha Rotem weren't even mentioned!

Hamas caught smuggling explosives into Jordan

Ok, I knew the Hamas folks are crazy but I really didn't think that they were this stupid: Hamas smuggles missiles and explosives into Jordan and seeks out attack targets. I first read about this just a little while ago on Khalaf's blog even before it hit Ynet or Ha'aretz (the news still hasn't hit the BBC or NYTimes as of writing this). Pretty neat how bloggers spread the news faster than the news media spread the news! Khalaf predicted that this would happen some time ago.

I talked with a boy I'm friends with on the phone today-- his best friend Ariel, just 31 years old, was one of those murdered in the terrorist attack yesterday. His friend had stopped by to see him while he was at work for a quick chat and then headed off to get lunch. S is having a really hard time dealing with this and is going through the kind of irrational but normal feelings of guilt. He said over and over that if he hadn't been so busy at work and had been able to talk with him for just 5 more minutes, maybe even one...and of course there isn't really much you can say to make those feelings go away. He may stop voicing them but he won't stop thinking them for a long while. So many lives damaged by such a senseless act.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Terrorist attack (?) yes

Just a little while ago I heard a distant and muted thud sound, not to disimilar from the sonic booms we were getting a lot of last fall but further away sounding. Then the ambulances that live just around the corner from me screamed down the street. I can hear ambulances from further afield. Was looking out the window trying to see if I could see anything but all is normal on my street with traffic flowing and people walking in the sunshine. Ha'aretz just put across the ticker that there was an explosion in the Neve Sha'anan neighborhood which is close to the old bus station. Waiting for updates. Wait, now they are saying that at least 30 people have been injured in a terrorist attack.

*From Haaretz now, it seems the same falafel stand that was targeted by a terrorist attack in January has been hit again: "The Monday explosion ripped through Felafel Rosh Ha'ir, the same restaurant that was hit by an attacker on Jan. 19, medics said."
*Now they are saying that 5 people were killed in the attack, not counting the s.o.b. who perpetrated it.
*6 killed.
*Just talked to Noorster. Making the "are you ok" phone circuit. She heard the explosion while having coffee. For those who read both our blogs, Lisa is also ok.
*6 killed, another 6 in very critical condition, at least 35 wounded. Both the Fatah Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade and Islamic Jihad are claiming responsibility.
*Police are chasing a blue van that fled the scene of the attack. IDF troups entered Nablus to conduct arrest raid just after attack and are being confronted by Palestinians there.
*From YNET ticker: one of the critically injured evacuated to Ichilov Hospital has just died.
*Bomber may have been a woman. Number of injured rises to 40.
*Just saw Lisa on tv among the reporters. That was fast footwork to get there girl!
*Damage to the surrounding buildings looks just devastating from the tv coverage.
*Abbas condemns attack but Hamas spokeman applauds it and says it was a "legitmate act of self-defense."
*49 wounded taken to hospital. 7 dead including bomber. Security guard scuffled with bomber before he detonated himself.
*Death toll rises to 8.
*9th victim dies. 66 wounded still in hospital.
*Lisa has posted photos of the attack aftermath.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Pandy


03_austin_pandy_with_bird_01
Originally uploaded by yaeli_13.

the Magic Cat has done her final disappearing act. Thanks to my dear friends Kat and Bob, I will always know where to find her. She truly was a magic cat: out of thin air she brought so much love and joy into my life and to the all those who got to know her. My little snuggle muffin is at peace.

Pictured: Pandy, two days after I rescued her in December, 2001. Ever my playful girl!

My silly, sassy girl


2005_0315spring20050038
Originally uploaded by yaeli_13.

The "Black Menaces": Best friends Mischa, on the left and Pandy when she was my fat and very sassy girl --New York, several weeks before making Aliyah.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Happy Pesach!

Chag sameach everyone! I would love to blog about my very first Pesach b'eretz --and probably will do tomorrow --but I'm so completely stuffed that the effort is beyond me. I need to recline and this is certainly the season for doing just that! Suffice it to say that it was an evening filled with very smart and totally fantastic children, warm, gracious and excellent hosts, a very good friend, and a hagadah beautifully conducted. I'm wishing the rest of you a wonderful Pesach and/or a Happy Easter, Spring Equinox, or whatever it is that you might celebrate around this time of the year!

Saturday, April 08, 2006

The Magic Cat

Pandy it seems has a magical ability to disappear and reappear at will. She slept on the bed with me last night but at some point got up and...disappeared. I awoke at 7:30 to give her her anti-nausea pill but could find her nowhere. I looked in all her usual curl-up places and a few unusual ones but not there. Ah, well, I thought, she's found a better-than-usual spot and she'll turn up in a bit. So I went back to bed for a little snooze while the coffee perked (got sent delicious double french roast coffee from Central Market and so was actually looking forward to officially waking up). A bit later I got up, had my two cups of coffee, fed the other snarling beasts and still no Pandy in sight. She needed her meds. I started hunting. I looked high (climbed on top of cabinets to see if she was up there) and I looked low (peering under things with the flashlight). I looked in places no cat could possibly be. I looked for three hours straight. And for those who have been in my apartment, you know how few places there are for even a mouse to hide!

In the midst of looking I took some towels out of the dryer, folded them and put them in the empty shelf under the vanity. Of course, I had already well checked out this shelf and all others for a sight of the disappearing black kitty and they were all kitty free. About 20 minutes later, after another foray of looking under the bed (including removing the mattresses to see if there was any possibility she had magicked herself into the only space even a mouse could fit into that sits right in the middle of the underneath of the bed) I returned to the bathroom to wash the grit from the floor off my hands. The cabinet door where I had put the towels was still half-ajar (it has difficulties closing) and there perched atop the freshly washed and folded towels that I had just inserted was Pandy.

How she got there and where she had been before that is anyone's guess! I can assure you, however, she was not in the toaster oven.

The other bit of more explainable magic that happened in my life was the wonderful cab driver who found my cell phone. I finally was able to coordinate getting it back last evening (kind of hard when I have no phone to call him or be called on) and headed out to Petach Tikva to retrieve it. When I got to his house he came out to the cab I taken to get to him with the cellphone and very modestly brushed off my profuse thanks. I tried to give him some reward and extreme thanks money but he pressed it back into my hand, saying he only did what anyone would do. Anyone? Not where I grew up! Then the cabbie who had driven me all the way out there and back to my door refused to let me pay him for the ride when he let me off, turning down a nearly 100 shekel fare. He said he had been inspired by the good deeds of a real tzaddik and wanted to do his small part. I love this country.

Friday, April 07, 2006

phoneless in Tel Aviv

I just got a call on my land line a little bit ago from a friend of mine (friend A) who said she got a call from a mutual friend (B) of ours saying he got a call from a cab driver --who has my phone. It wasn't that I wasn't loved all day and thus no one was calling me. And it wasn't that I left my phone next to the charger as I kept grousing at myself all day after not being able to find it (I knew I distinctly remembered unhooking it and inserting it in knapsack). No, it was because it somehow fell out of the knapsack in the cab I took to the bus because I was running late. The cabbie had very helpfully left his number with friend B and so friend A helpfully gave me friend B's and her own number (without my cellphone I have no one's number, not even my own mother's!). So we rang off so I could call friend B to get the cabbie's number. BUT-- Of course there is a but, this is my life after all and nothing it seems is ever simple or easy.

---automated message tells me that my account is set to receive calls only (bilvad) and that I can't call out. Of course, I can call and change this with them tomorrow when they are open until tomorrow noon. WHAT? When did this happen? Who said? How, WHAT? And of course I won't know how, why or what until tomorrow when they open. In the meantime I went to send off S.O.S. email to friend A and discovered an email from someone at a university somewhere in the world, ok in this country but not the one I currently work at, saying he or she had called me for something and got the cab driver. He or she also provided the cab driver's numbers (people in this country are seriously helpful!) along with telling me what he or she wanted and then had something in there about hoping I was having fun in Eilat and to watch out for the sharks. Uhhh, maybe the cab driver thought i was on my way to Eilat rather than B.S. (now wouldn't that be nice, vacation!) and passed that along? Definitely not in Eilat. Only wishing I was. Emailed fantastic friend A, she emailed back, and she will call ze cabbie in the morning and find out how I get my lifeline back.

She ended her email with "I sense a blog entry in all this!" Well, uh, ok, yeah :) And obviously cos here it is!

What I've decided is that since I obviously should not be allowed out of the house alone much less near a computer, I need a keeper. An editor. Or maybe I should say a deleter. Actually several. I've given the keys to my blog, so to speak, to a couple of friends from the States and tomorrow to friend A and they have strict instructions that if they see anything that I even remotely maybe shouldn't be saying in a public forum they will delete first and ask questions later. This makes me feel more comfortable. Obviously, I trust these folks with more than my life because I'm trusting them with the record of my life. and, lol, I should maybe give the keys to phishaliyah because as he(ack, ack, slicha, slicha) showed in the parody of my blog he knows me better than i do myself practically.

I made a concerted effort to not come near my blog for the past 24 hours while I thought about what I should do. Wow, when i did come back tonight and read the comments, well I nearly cried. And lemme tell you, you guys, readers and commenters, long-time friends, friends I've gotten to know here -some through this blog and through their blogs-- and friends I haven't ever met yet, you give so much to me. Having you guys is like having a big family. Having you guys has made me feel so not alone when I moved home alone and I don't just think but know has really helped me make a successful klita here. Thank you.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

I'm on the fence. I'm going to be taking a bit of a blogging hiatus for a few days while I decide if I will continue blogging here and, if so, what form this website will take. At the moment I'm thinking I will use it to put up information and experiences directly related to the aliyah experience but not so much directly related to my life.

One of the things that I really like about blogging is that it serves many purposes for me: it has taken the place of my diary, it allows me to tell my friends back home all the things I would otherwise be sharing in daily two-hour plus long conversations, and it has allowed me to meet, both virtually and in person many fantastic people. But I blog in exactly the same way and pretty much say exactly what I would say in a private diary and to close friends. I write stream of consciousness, my spelling and punctuation are atrocious and I don't care, and it is very rare for me to go back and re-read much less edit what I write. At the end of every month I save that month's posts (because it is my diary now) so that I can go back and re-read my experiences in the future. The thing is though, that this is a public webpage and not a private diary. I have no way of knowing who is reading or if people who are reading are discussing it with people who aren't reading who might then discuss it with others who aren't and the next thing I know the camel belonging to the Beduin who lives in the 18th tent ten hills from nowhere knows all. Dealing with censoring and re-censoring lately and having to stop and think about should I say this or...really brought it home to me and made it really not fun. Having to stop, think, and censor makes it work. So, I think the solution is for me to move "my daily life" to a private blog. That means this blog will undergo some changes.

I'm open to suggestions as to what you guys would like to see here.

Monday, April 03, 2006

I'm strongly thinking about organizing a protest in front of the Labour offices here. Holding up signs like "We voted for Labour to a have a Labour-Kadima coalition," "Peretz lied to his voters," "Labour voter against coalition with the Right" and the sign I will personally hold up and wave around, "I almost voted Kadima but I was stupid and voted Labour." Anyone want to join in?

almost enough to make me religious

You know the phrase, "G-d moves in mysterious ways," right? Well, there has been a major silver lining in my need to be up 24 hours a day and that is the health of my cat Pandy. Because I was up I was able to give her little tiny meals literally around the clock. Every 45 minutes I'd get out her food and finger-feed (stuff unwillingly) a little bit at a time into her. She was getting her (many) meds right on a completely regular schedule, including in the middle of the night --because when I go to sleep I often sleep right past the alarm telling me to get up and pill her.

In addition to this I've discovered a miraculous product called Nephrocare. It is similar to Ensure which is used for infants that aren't thriving and AIDs patients, being a stand-alone liquid diet packed with calories and nutrients. But Nephrocare goes one better, actually many better: it is for human patients with renal failure and on dialysis. I have to thank Israelis for prying into what others would consider offensive personal and private terrority for this discovery. I was buying a second stock of the Ensure at the pharmacy down the street when the pharmacist looked me up and down and said bluntly , "what do you need this for? it is not for you?" Becoming very Israeli myself I gave full disclosure with abandon. The pharmacist tut tuted about the poor little chatula and said, 'no, this is not what you want. Here let me show you. This is what you want' From the back she produces the magic forumula and explained it in great detail. It has double the calories of Ensure but is low in phosphorous. It has additional B6 (which she, desperately anemic, needs) and other stuff which people and cats with kidney failure don't absorb correctly. This forumla helps them to do so. Best of all, she loves this stuff (vanilla flavoured).

She had dropped from her regular 12 plus pounds (5.5 kilos) down to a mere 3 (1.5 kilos). In just the last week she has gained up to almost 6 now (almost 3 kilos). Not only that, but on Saturday morning she, along with the herd, galloped into the kitchen for the morning meal and willingly ate on her own a whole normal bowl-full of kibbles. A half hour later the seriously fat cat of the house attempted to break into the food supply and she, hearing the shaking of kibbles, flew off the couch and into the kitchen. I had to feed them all then (of course) in the hopes that she would eat again --she did, another full bowl! Since then she has been an eating girl and a playful one. I keep giving her 5 mls at a shot of the high calorie good stuff in between her willing-eating and my finger-forcing. Our goal now is to get her to at least 8 pounds and, if she keeps up with her willing drinking, the vet thinks I can go to once-a-day fluid-giving rather than doing it twice a day.

She jumped on little Matan today when he tried to tag her tail. She chased Buffy and rolled with a cat-nip mouse. She is not sitting in a huddled ball all the time. Cross your fingers that she has turned a major corner.

Matan, however, is in the cat-house. I laid down early this afternoon to attempt a nap between getting back from Jerusalem and immediately dragging the cat to the vet for her shot, and going to meet with students. I had just slid into sleep when the small beast came up and bit me in they eye. Not hard but enough to send me sky-rocketing upright. My eye was tantalizingly visible from beneath the covers I had pulled over my head to block the light and he wanted attention. So much for the nap. And he's been in time-out ever since!

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Part II
[On the advice of someone I respect a great deal, the following is highly censored]

***The censors now allow the following: There was an almost balagan. I got no sleep for many days trying to do some sorting out and preventative measures. It worked. I got sick. I'm recovering.****

The following segment is allowed in its entirity:

One very good thing about having had to stay up all night and almost all night for the past week and a half is that my cat Pandy has seriously benefited. That is another post all its own but she has, especially today, been a whole new cat. Keep the fingers crossed for continued improvement!

(The following has been highly censored --a must for classified information)

Sick as a dog, but life is good. I haven't been updating ye olde blog except for a couple of quick election posts. The reason was is that the two-week period I had for getting that proposal and presentation ready got reduced into an incredibly shorter time-space. But it's ok, because I managed to save the world. Well, not quite, but I did manage to save the 100,000 dollars that [censored].

[Due to the smallness of this country and the fact that everyone seems to know everyone and at least several everyones know all the everyones and everywhats I may or may not have alluded to in this post --it has been completely censored.]