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The Brownsteins in the Land of Israel

Chapter 3:

An Address, Maybe?

July 30, 2003

Dear Friends:

First let me thank all of you who have written in encouragement after my first two installments.  It has been wonderful hearing from all of you!

I promised last week to tell the story of "The Washing Machine That Refused To Be Replaced!"  But, because so many people wanted to have an address, please indulge me the following update.

Many of you have suggested that life in Israel would be hard.  Those of you who know me well have suggested that I might not have the disposition to deal with the "opportunities for growth" here.  Many have come right out and challenged my ability to have patience in difficult situation.  Don't worry, though.  I have been nothing but patient -- even in the face of a third world post office.

When I first moved to L.A. in the 1920s, I go a mail box on Robertson Blvd.  It has proved to be a very good thing because each time I move, I don't sweat it.  That is why I wanted a box here.

Fast forward to today and, what do you know?  Practically outside my new Jerusalem door is a post office with boxes right outside!

So I try to go inside.  But, instead I run into Doron, the guard.  He is really excited to see me because, of course, he lived in Encino for 10 years.  Doron loved to talk with me about Ventura Blvd. and the Oscars.  While all kinds of strange looking people with k'fias and big coats saunter past, Doron wants to talk Lakers.

And, as you know, nobody loves talking more about the Lakers than I do.

So once I finally got past Kobe, I waited in line for a few minutes, catching the tail end of a stink between a postal clerk and a young girl from Chicago.  She was livid because the clerk took from her 48 "shecks," as she too hiply noted, for some medicine sent to her.  She was yelling to them to get the manager.  But Levy, the main postal dude, has made a concerted effort to stay away from customers' needs.  The girl said that the posted clerk suggested that she might be able to get the money back when she left the country, but that nobody in the post office had any idea how.  This infuriated her even more: "They took my shecks and won't help me get it back."  I asked how much the medicine was worth.  She said about $60.  I told her that Israel has an 18% VAT (Value Added Tax) ... on everything!  I pointed out that 18% of $60 is about 48 "shecks."  She left, mumbling something about never declaring the drugs again.

 Next was my turn.

Tamar, the clerk who took the shecks, seems quite busy, until you speak with her.  First I asked for a PO Box.  She sent me to 60-year-old Meir -- who speaks no English.   Well, how about stamps?  "No, I'm out.  Talk to Meir."  "So if you don't sell stamps or mailboxes, what do you do?"  "I send people to Meir."


It takes about 20 minutes to learn that no boxes are available.  Come back (to Meir) in a few days.  A few days later Meir (through the Guard) tells me that a box is available.  It will cost about $15 until the end of 2003.  Great.  Come back in a few days for the keys.

Just to be sure, I mail myself a letter from the same post office.    It only takes three days to arrive.  You figure it out.  Anyway.  It works.  







The address is below, as are Batya and Yehuda, in the belly of a Kanga in the Jerusalem Zoo.












By the way, my wife, Sara, now is of the belief that our new Zoo here is the finest in the world.  It is really great (I feel like Larry King).  Complete with animals and everything.










Here she is, just before going onto Noah's Ark.

Anyway, thanks again for reading this far.

I appreciate and look forward to your comments and greetings.


Please stay tuned for Chapter 4: The Washing Machine That Refused To Be Replaced!

All the best,

The Brownsteins

PO Box 8130 

Jerusalem, 91081  ISRAEL

Phone: 011-972-2-6733-491

NOTE:  No non-kosher Animals were harmed in the photography of this reenactment.  All characters are purely fictional.  If you want to add someone to this list, or remove yourself, just e-mail and let him know.  Please freely distribute to those with too much time on their hands


Copyright (c) - Rich Brownstein 2003




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