Friday, December 3, 2010

What a difference a year makes...

... one year ago today, I spent the evening in my ulpan class, trying so hard to learn enough Hebrew to get myself to Israel. And Ebin, dear sweet Ebin, took me out to dinner for my birthday at one of our favorite Upper West Side haunts. He gave me my first right-to-left opening CD (read: it came from Israel); I'm actually listening to it now, as I do often on Fridays before shabbat.

A few days later, a group of friends, some quite old and others deceptively new, gathered at the home of my college advisor (and friend) to celebrate together, eat, talk, make music... It was one of the most special birthday celebrations for me; I carry a history of birthdays and special events where people jumped ship last minute leaving me quite alone. I wasn't alone last year.

This year? I made it to Israel, this we know. (I've been unbelievably overwhelmed with work for school, as everyone might be able to guess by my lack of posting.) I have an insane number of classes, most of which are in Hebrew. Last year, I couldn't read Hebrew. This year, I wrote a 4-typed-page midterm in Hebrew. A year...

Last year, I came to Israel fresh out of a long relationship, earnestly seeking no one and nothing but myself. Now I'm in a new relationship, and I don't have words to explain how different it feels than my relationships of the past. I might actually be able to build the life that somewhere deep inside I always wished for, but at the same time told myself would never actually be possible. A year...

I woke up early today and watched my birthday sunrise from my mirpeset. Tonight, I'll see the sunset in Rome. We're flying there to spend my birthday weekend, and coincidentally our two-month anniversary, in Rome; it is my first trip to Europe.

I'm missing a lot of those people who were with me last year, from the early morning trip to my corner cafe and my favorite people there, to my party a few days later... I miss those parts of home. But in a really beautiful turn here, I seem to have found another kind of home, and it is not dependent on place at all. 

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