Monday, August 22, 2011

How come anytime you call someone's cell phone in Israel, instead of a dial tone, you hear the melody for "whatever I said, whatever I did, I didn't mean it..."? It's almost as if everyone in Israel constantly needs to apologize for something! - blogger of the month, Avi Kopstick

 It's been four weeks in Beer Sheva so far, and things are definitely moving forward at an alarming speed. For instance, we are already all completely fluent in Hebrew. To illustrate this, I will write this blogpost completely in Hebrew:

אתם מוכנים ילדים? כן,כן, קפטן! אז תגידו... כן,כן קפטן! ווווווווו........ בתוך אננס הוא חי לו שם: בובספוג, כן, כן! חי לו בכיף מתחת לים: בוספוג, כן, כן! כך לחיות הייתם רוצים! בוספוג, כן כן! אז השליכו חכה אל הדגים! בובספוג, כן, כן! בוב ספוג המרובע, בובספוג המרובע, בובספוג המרובע

Just kidding. I can't speak Hebrew. That was actually the SpongeBob SquarePants theme song in Hebrew... But things are moving rather quickly here in B7. In just one week, we will take our emergency medicine final, say goodbye to our summer ulpan teachers, celebrate my birthday, and start our first semester as full-fledge MSIH'ers. CRAZY. 

So let's see, what actually happened this week of any interest?.. Hmmm… I can't really think of anything. We got up everyday, went to class, practiced our emergency medicine drills… There was this really big protest in Beer Sheva this week, which was kind of cool... Oh! We found the 11 NIS, all-you-can-eat, lunch deal in the Soroka cafeteria this week!.. But I guess that's not too fascinating… Hmmm. Nope! I guess it was a pretty slow week.

… I mean there was this tiny, little, nothing incident involving the bomb sirens going off this week (actually it happened twice this week), but common, that's no biggie right? **nervous chuckles** Nothing you have to worry about of course... Alright, I'll admit, it was rather frightening, getting ready for bed, hearing a loud, wailing noise outside (which at first I took for being just the wind), and then waiting in our bomb shelter until it was safe to come out. 

And then I guess there was also the quadruple terrorist attack yesterday... That was a tad discomforting, sitting in class, looking out the window, and seeing helicopter after helicopter dropping off victims at the emergency room right under us. But really, I guess it's impossible for life to come to a sudden halt each time these things happen. Honestly, our teachers just continued with their presentation on exam taking, without pause, as if it was the only thing that mattered at that time.
I'm not saying we aren't taking these events seriously. We do. In fact, each time a siren does go off, we get text messages right away from the school, letting us know what is happening, and then another to let us know when it is safe to leave our shelter. The next day, we get calls from our student liaisons and emergency medicine instructors asking us if we're feeling okay, and how we are dealing with the scare after the fact... I'm just saying that if we obsessed over every terrorist attack and let them dramatically derail our focus, how would we ever accomplish what we came here to do? Which is to become the most awesomest, coolest, smartest, handsomest group of doctors that there's ever been. So when I woke up this morning and saw two missed text messages, one telling me that bombs were flying in from Gaza, and another telling me that the danger had passed and it was safe to leave my shelter, I just shrugged my shoulders and started my day as if nothing happened.

So in that vain, let's shrug our collective shoulders, and end this blog post on a positive note: Last Thursday, we went on an incredible night-hike, under a full moon, in the Negev desert. For three hours, we serpentined through Wadi Chaverim, a dried out riverbed, sharing in the peace and tranquility of the desert at night.

 After the hike, we bussed to a bonfire pit and sang the night away around dancing flames and roasting marshmallows. It was a really special time. Thanks to our student liaisons for arranging such a fun and inspiring night. 

I'm going to sign off now, but I look forward to seeing you all next week for my last post, when I'll be handing the torch off someone else in my class. Until then, להתראות!  - by blogger of the month Avi Kopstick