Going to the Airport

You are going on vacation?(נופש) You have your plane tickets? (כרטסי טיסה) Your passport (דרכון) is up to date? Your suitcases(מזודות) are packed with your name, address, phone numbers, and I’d put your e-mail address on them as well, and everything is ready for your trip. Nowadays, you have to get to the airport (שדה התעופה) two hours early. I find that the best way to get to the airport is to go by airport taxi.(מונית) In Israel, it is called Nesher Taxi Company. You can take a regular taxi to the airport, but it is very expensive. The Nesher costs (עולה) about $15 or so. Reserving space in the taxi is easy, just call them the day before your flight (טיסה), and they tell you when you have to be waiting outside. If your flight is scheduled to leave at 6:00pm from Ben Gurion Airport (נמל התעופה בן גוריון), they will pick you up at 3:00pm in front of your Jerusalem home. If you live in Tel Aviv, it is much closer and they will pick you up at 3:30pm. It is usually a 40 minute drive from Jerusalem to the Ben Gurion Airport. You will be dropped off right in front of the International Terminal. (הטרימנל הבינלאומי)

Inside the Airport

When you go inside, you will have to wait in line, to show your passport and get your ticket validated. You need a printout of your E-ticket and your passport. A security agent (מאבטח) will come up to you while you are waiting in line to ask questions(שאלות) about who packed your suitcase, and whether you know about everything that is in the suitcases. The security agents are very polite (נימוס), and I have never had any trouble with this part of the check-in process.

When you get to the front of the line, the ticket agent checks your ticket and passport, weighs your luggage, puts the correct tags, for your flight on the suitcase, and sends them off to the baggage handlers. The ticket agents gives you a boarding pass.

Passport control

Once (פעם אחת) I went on a flight at the last minute to the United States. I didn’t know that my Israeli passport had expired! (עבר זמנו) Actually, there is an Israeli Passport office at the airport! I went there, and they are open 24 hours for cases like this! They issued me a temporary (זמני) Israeli Passport on a piece of A4 paper. I had to go into the gate (שער) within two hours or it would expire. I don’t recommend relying upon this method to travel, but it worked once!

The Gate

So now you go up to the gate. You might have more time to wait depending upon (תלוי על) how long it took to do the security measures. (אמצעי בטיחות) There are Duty Free shops and restaurants (מסעדות) if you get hungry or need a book to read on the flight.

On the Plane

I usually go right to the gate and sit down to wait (לחכות) there. I don’t want to be eating and have to get up in the middle of my meal to run (לרוץ) to the plane! When the flight is called, I show my boarding pass and get on the plane. Wow, I did it! I’m in my seat (מושב), and I’m off on my long awaited vacation! See you when I get back!

Vocabulary of the airport

כרטסי טיסה
שדה התעופה
נמל התעופה בן גוריון
הטרימנל הבינלאומי
פעם אחת
עבר זמנו
תלוי על
אמצעי בטיחות

Visiting Jerusalem

Your first visit (ביקור) to Jerusalem is something that you will remember for all your life. It is a city (עיר) of the old and new, the religious and the secular and a wonderful place to visit. There are many places to see, from the Old City (העיר העתיקה), to museums and cultural institutions.

My First Visit to Jerusalem

I remember my first visit to Jerusalem. We came on the bus through Shaar Hagai, The road through the mountain was breathtaking (עוצר נשימה). Even in the middle of the summer the trees were green, the road seemed to always to wind in an upward direction. Finally, we stopped at the Central Bus Station (התחנה המרכזית). To my complete surprise, my best friend Andrea was waiting for me when I got off! She grabbed me by the hand, we stopped at a Gali Store on Ben Yehuda Street (רחוב בן יהודה), bought Israeli sandals, then ran to the Kotel (הכותל)! It was a flash of sound and color as we entered the Shuk (השוק), and around the corner at the bottom, the full glory of the Kotel hit me in the face! This is the Holiest Place for Jews in the World! Then looking up, I saw the Dome of the Rock, the third Holiest place for the Muslims. Ont he way back, we saw the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, one of the most Holy places for Christians! No wonder Jerusalem is called the Holy City(עיר הקודש)!

A taste of long ago

Even today, you can get the taste of long ago. Going to Meah Shearm, you can see Haredim (חרדים), clothed in black as they did in the 17th Century. Over a few streets, down the hill you come to Ben Yehuda Street, which is a Pedestrian Mall. With its many restaurants, shops and money changers it is a favorite hang out for tourists and Jerusalem residents alike.

The 99 bus route

There is a special bus line, the 99 from Egged that will bring you on a tour of all the most important cultural(תרבותי) venues. It is a double decker bus, and be sure to sit on the top so that you can get the best view. You can buy a day pass and get on and off the route 99 bus as many times as you like.

the Israel Museum

The new Israel Museum (מוזיאון ישראל) which has recently been remodeled is a must for everyone to visit. All the exhibits have been updated and you can get a mobile tour phone for a fee that will give you all the details about all the exhibits. Outside, there is the Sculpture garden (גן הפסלים), and the model of Jerusalem during the Second Temple times. It was moved from the Holy Land Hotel and it fits perfectly next to the sunken round building that houses the Dead Sea Scrolls also know as the Scrolls from Kumran (מגילות קומרן).

the Biblical Zoo

Over behind the mall, is the The Tisch Family Zoological Gardens in Jerusalem ( גן החיות התנכי) It is famous for its collection of animals that were living in Israel during Biblical times. The zoo features animal exhibits (תצוגת החיות) that are open, and a few like the Lemur, Australian Bat, and Kangaroos, allow visitors to enter the animals’ exhibit. The zoo keepers are in the exhibit to feed the animals and answer questions about the animals. One time the Lemurs got out of their enclosure and were seen at different areas of the park. We happened to be visiting the zoo on that day.

Many places to visit in Jerusalem!

Vocabulary about Jerusalem

העיר העתיקה
עוצר נשימה
התחנה המרכזית
רחוב בן יהודה
עיר הקודש
מוזיאון ישראל
גן הפסלים
מגילות קומרן
גן החיות התנכי
תצוגת החיות