On Monday, I decided that one hour of ulpan was just enough for me! So I left early and decided to go to Kiryat Sefer to do some shopping. In addition to my hunt for baking soda - WHICH, by the way, I FOUND on Monday at Supersol and even though I have approximately 2 metric tons of baking soda from Lisa, I had to buy one from Supersol because it brought closure to my month-long hunt - I have also been searching for crock pot bags. You'd think, in this country of Jews, crock pot bags for cholent would not be so difficult to find. However, if you thought that, you'd be wrong. I figured I would return to Kiryat Sefer, the scene of the crime where I actually purchased the crock pot. Surely they will have the elusive bags! I dragged Lisa with me, because I did not want to violate my own personal commandment: "Thou shalt not travel to Kiryat Sefer unaided." However, the paper goods store there did not have the bags, and neither did the big supermarket. (And when I say big, I mean it. Not just that the store is big, but everything sold there is meant for very large families. You can't buy a package of toilet paper there with less than 48 rolls.) However, disappointed as I was in my crock pot bag search, I did find the good sponges that I love so much that Supersol just doesn't carry. So it wasn't a total loss. I got sponges. Plus, some underwear.
Underwear, you say? Yes, indeed, because on the way to KS I got a phone call from Ariella's gan that she had a little accident and needed a fresh pair. Lisa and I raced back from KS to gan, where I found Ariella happily playing in the sand, and not, as I imagined, huddled in a chair in the corner, cold and wet and crying. She looked at me quizzically and said, "Why are you here?" I gave her the undies, asked her what happened - she missed, ma la'asot? - and then went back to join Lisa in the car. Since we had an hour to kill, we of course went out for coffee. And some cheesecake. Sponges, undies, and coffee - a killer combination.
A P.S. to the toilet story. For those of you who don't like these mildly inappropriate tales, please skip this paragraph and move on. But you'll be sorry... Anyway, Ariella has told me before that the girls' toilet in gan is missing the seat. So she has to sit on the rim. I figured that might have been a factor in her accident, since there is a lot of coordination involved in using these toilets. Today I asked the assistant ganenet what the story was with the toilet. I figured I could just go to Home Center, buy the toilet seat, and install it myself if that would help. However, the ganenet insisted that everything was b'seder. She said it was deliberate that the toilet was missing the seat - apparently it is like that in many, if not all, ganim. She said the reason is for sanitation - the plastic toilet seat is more conducive to germs and harder to clean, and without the seat the toilets are more sanitary. She said the bathrooms are cleaned twice a day and the kids are big and don't need toilet seats. At this point I thought maybe she misunderstood me and thought I was referring to those training seats you put on the toilet for little kids. Either way, she was emphatic that the bathrooms were in pristine condition and there was no problem with them. If any of you loyal readers have heard anything about the Seatless Toilet Special for Ganim, please let me know.
Today I got a lot of exercise. This is because I was carless. This is very hard for someone like me who is used to a car. (Read: spoiled.) Last time I was carless, they took it for a test and returned it two hours later. Today, it was due for "tipul" (maintenance). I figured they could pick it up from me during ulpan, and return it before I needed to leave ulpan. This time, though, they needed it for the entire day, to take it into Yerushalayim (Jerusalem, J-lem, etc.) So they came to meet me in Buchman (the neighborhood where my ulpan is, about a 40-minute walk from Dimri), took my car, and did NOT, as Donny had promised, give me one to use in the meantime. So there I was, stuck in Buchman, without a car. Luckily I got a ride home with someone, so I had just enough to come home, do some laundry - whoops, can't do laundry, they've shut off the water - and walk to Ariella's gan to pick her up. We walked back with Aiden, stopped at a park, stopped for ice cream, and got home just in time to get the stroller and go back out to pick up Yaakov. Phew! That sure was a lot of walking! Better have a very large bowl or plate or helping of something very unhealthy to make up for that!
In ulpan today we read a little article about Abraham Lincoln. Israel doesn't know what to do with silent letters, such as the "L" (the second one) in Lincoln. So they pronounce it "Lin-ko-lin." Israel, this is not acceptable. Learn the correct way to say his name! We don't go around calling your former prime minister "Menachem Be-GIN" because "that's how we would say it in English." No! We defer to your pronounciation and call him "BAY-gin." I hereby call on the Hebrew language to formally recognize silent letters and stop with this "Lin-ko-lin" and "sal-mon" silliness.