Since my mind does not work in chronological fashion, I figured that I should tell you that the stories that make up the "Israel Story" will not be told in chronological order; rather, they will be told in the order that they come to me and as I am able to fully develop them into vignettes.
I also feel that I should clarify that my original intention when I graduated from college, since I only knew that I wanted to be a writer, was to be an au pair in Italy (pretty impressive). I had studied French and Italian in college, mastering neither, but loving Italian, and so hoped to go to Italy to work on my language skills (cough cough meet some Italian men cough cough). But the family I had made plans with decided to go to Argentina for a while, leaving me in the lurch.
“Israel, why not go to Israel” someone recommended.
“Yes,” I said, “why not go to Israel.” I figured that I would meet someone with whom I could travel around the world there, since I was adventurous enough to travel to Israel alone, but not enough for the solo European tour. I had also dreamed of living in Australia (another story altogether) and figured that this could be a way to reach that goal.
And then I found the program (Kibbutz Ulpan) where you live and work and study Hebrew on a kibbutz for six months. That seemed ideal to me: getting to go abroad and not have all of the stress (at least not right away) of being on my own. You know, just me and my (lost) backpack.