I was told by several veteran olim that I should never expect to accomplish more than one thing in a day when I am in Israel, with regard to dealing with bureaucracy. Today, I accomplished not one, not two, but three things!
One: I went to the Misrad HaPnim in Haifa and received my Teudat Z'hut
Two: I went to Customs and opened a file with them as an Olah Chadashah so I would get my benefits for importing my shipment
Three: I went to the logistics company dealing with my shipment and arranged for the customs inspection and subsequent release of my shipment.
EVERYONE I dealt with was nice, respectful, and courteous. Even dealing with the parking attendant I was rewarded with a nice experience. In fact, I was amazed. This was a parking lot where upon entry one takes a ticket from a machine and upon exit one submits the ticket so the parking attendant can charge you for the correct amount of time one was parked there. Me? I went and LOST the ticket. So, I reconciled myself to having to pay the maximum amount. We drove up to the attendant booth and I rolled down my window and said, "Ebadti et HaCartis sheli" (I lost my ticket). She then asked me how long I was there and I told her "shaahtayim" (2 hours). She charged me for 2 hours -- and gave me a receipt.
Now, everyone knocks customer service here. But let me tell you -- if this had happened in the good ol' US of A, I would have been charged the maximum amount - a full days parking! I was very pleasantly amazed!!
So far, so good...
Tomorrow: making potato kugel, going to Nof Ayalon for Shabbat, then on Sunday I go to the event in J'lem for the new Olim. It is for Olim to get their Teudat Z'hut, but there will also be banks and cell phone distributors and other services offering their products/services -- with special deals for Olim. I am going to this event for that. I am also going to be meeting my sister for lunch at Tmol Shilshom.
Next week, at some point will be MOVE IN week for me... I can't wait!