I made aliyah (moved to Israel) with my family in June of 2004. At the time I was using a wheelchair for mobility, but could get around pretty well. We landed at Ben Gurion, got a taxi to the merkaz klitah (absorption center) in Karmiel, and eventually settled in, got an apartment, moved to Karnei Shomron, got a (work) car, moved to the Negev, …
I always intended to tour Israel, get to know my new country, see the different parts of it. Somehow it didn’t happen. Now it is 2014 – not quite ten years later. The Husband was asked by his employer to use some of his accumulated vacation time. Nearby, in Sderot, a new train station has just opened, and residents of the area are able to receive a train pass (Rav Kav), which, for three months, allows us to travel the trains for free anywhere we wish to go.
It looked serendipitous. Finally both the time and the ability to wander about Israel, getting to know the parts of it we haven’t lived in. It seemed perfect. Of course, I am a wheelchair user, and can no longer get around without one even a little bit. And so the thought was born, that I would travel the train system and find out what it is like from a wheelchair user’s perspective. And blog about it. Because if it isn’t blogged it didn’t happen, right?
Brilliant idea, and so simple. I have an iPad with which I can update about our travels with minimum hassle. Of course, the iPad chose this unfortunate time to fall, breaking the glass screen.
The (work) car which we just received as a replacement got a flat tire. No worries, T(he) H(usband) will dash to the puncturiah to get it taken care of. But at the puncturiah we are told the tire isn’t fixable and must be replaced. It is a work car, which means TH needs to get it replaced according to the rules of the contract. He phones his work and they want to tow the car from Hod HaSharon (in the centre) to their garage, but wait, we live in the south and TH is on vacation. I could probably fill this blog with all of the phone calls and back-ing and forth-ing but finally he gets permission to pay for a new-used tire from the puncturiah, to be reimbursed. Only someone from the garage phones to say she’s arranged for the car to go to a dealer and get four new tires. The next day TH drives to two dealers in Be’er Sheva, neither of whom will do the tires. *sigh*
Two days down, and we haven’t good tires or a working iPad. We were planning on getting our Rav Kav-im (train passes) on Thursday. Will we even be able to get to Sderot?