Tuesday, September 22, 2009


September 21: early AM

I’m writing this post from the airplane on my way to Israel. It still hasn’t clicked in my brain that I will not see Shaker Heights or anywhere else in the US for at least 8 months. Besides one visit from my mom and sister and one visit from my dad, I won’t see anyone who I know from back home. Thank God for skype, email, and facebook! I want to hear from everyone—no excuses. For those of you who prefer more traditional communication, I can receive mail at the following address:

Gabe Pincus

Arava Institute for Environmental Studies

Kibbutz Ketura

D.N. Eilot, Israel 88840

And I will also have a cell phone by Thursday probably. The great part about it is that I also have a 216 number that transfers to my Israeli cell phone, so no one has to pay international calling charges. When I get the phone, I’ll post the phone number. As for skype, my username is glpincus. And email: glpincus@gmail.com. I think I have covered pretty much every method of communication, so as I said, no excuses.

These last few weeks have been hectic idleness. You may say this is an impossibility, but I assure you that despite the contradiction, I have experienced hectic idleness at its maximum. I’ll explain. Practically all of my friends (except for OSU and CWRU people) had left for college by the first few days of September. After a summer of partying and celebration with all of my friends, my nights suddenly became quiet. And after I finished interning at Senator Sherrod Brown’s office, the daytime also became quiet. Every day consisted of at least sleeping in, eating, and pretending to clean my messes throughout the house. So far, this is all the “idle” part of my life. The “hectic” part was that I was constantly dealing with small issues to prepare to leave. Granted, I saved most of the work until the last few days. (I needed to create some excitement/pressure to motivate me. Some people aka my mom call that procrastination.) However, there was the visa application, medical insurance, travel insurance, all types of forms, going to the dentist, blah, blah, blah. Basically I was juggling a bunch of small tasks, and they just added up into frenzy. This past week has been really frantic because I had to fulfill a promise I made to my mom to have all of my stuff cleaned up, and of course there was packing. I want to point out that I did pull through in the end. My rooms and areas of the house are thoroughly clean. My suitcases weigh exactly 50 and 70 lbs, fitting the airline restrictions perfectly. Anyway, reading about cleaning and packing is probably even less amusing than the act itself, so I will move on.

I forgot to mention that I went to visit Duke and New Jersey last weekend to party and see relatives, respectively. (It is important that you don’t confuse the two!) I just wanted to give a shout-out to everyone I visited that weekend because it was great, especially in contrast to the aforementioned chores.

SO, that pretty much covers the past few weeks. Today, I finished packing, played tennis, went in the hot tub, and said my goodbyes. I mentioned earlier that it still hadn’t clicked that I was leaving home for a very long time, but I expected to feel more emotional. I did cry, but I was crying because other people were crying. It’s strange that my departure feels more real to them than it does to me. However, there is one thing that feels very real to me: the actual scenery of Shaker Heights. I have never really appreciated how beautiful Shaker and Cleveland are. We may get some gray weather, but there is so much to value in the nature, architecture, and charm of Shaker. And even the gray weather has its place in my heart—I know that I will look back at it longingly when it’s 110°+ in the desert. Actually, the one poster that I brought with me depicts all four seasons; a spring and summer with green, a fall with orange and red, and a winter with white.

My flight is good so far. My first flight (to Philadelphia) was easy and short, but they made me check (not gate check) my backpack because it was too big. That ends up being pretty convenient because they didn’t charge me for an additional checked bag, and I have a lot less stuff to carry. I already watched a movie and I think I might watch another one now. Next time I write, I will be in Israel!


  1. It's 9PM your time so you've finished fasting--weathermen promised rain for to-day. I knew it never rains on Yom Kippur so I was able to get vitD as i left temple and was greeted by so-o many friends! I didn't have to rush home to eat-only 2PM here. I was a little teary at times thinking of all the fasting gramp and I did together!
    Luv-A-Gram -[like telegram]! LOVE

  2. grandma you don't have to comment on every post, especially if it's embarrassing and irrelevant