.הכרת עיר חדשה
Yesterday, I mainly stayed in, but I did venture out to do some more exploring of my neighborhood in the other direction. I walked up to what is known as "The Shuk" (where shuk = open-air market). There, there are numerous booths selling fresh produce, meats, nuts, spices, and baked goods as well as other items such as clothes, accessories, toys, and books. Things there are relatively inexpensive, and I considered buying a backpack in a nearby store but wanted to comparison shop a bit.
I had a chance to do just that comparison shopping today. This afternoon, we went to another shuk that travels around the country and is in Jerusalem every Monday called Shuk Ramle. It was small and mostly full of women's fashion items, so I only stayed for about ten minutes before walking across the street to the Jerusalem Mall, which could have been lifted straight out of any American city. I bought pens and pencils at Office Depot and saw The Incredible Hulk with some fellow students, and I also learned that the backpacks at the Shuk are slightly to moderately less expensive than at the mall. So, I believe I'll be going back tomorrow morning to make a purchase. The backpack I want is fairly expensive (270 NIS (~$81) was an early offering price, but I'm hoping to get him down), but it's also large and high quality, and I like to be able to trust my backpacks for a long time.
Tomorrow officially starts registration and marks the time when I'm an official student at HUC. That means I get to go through the headache of tracking down my loan status to make sure I don't have payments due in a week, but it also means that things are going to get moving, albeit slowly. We have one meeting tomorrow and an evening social event; the "real" orientation begins Wednesday, continues into Thursday and Friday, and bleeds into ulpan, which starts on Sunday. Wish me luck!