Let's see...Purim was quite the experience. A good friend of mine from Chicago, Cara, had been in Israel for about a week at that point, and she came to spend Purim with me in the city, which was really wonderful. Pardes is a good place for holidays; there was a student-written Purim shpiel, a megillah reading, and a great seudah at my teacher Meesh's house. I spent some of the evening on Ben Yehudah, which was a bit of madhouse, but I'm glad I went - it was an interesting evening, to say the least.
I've been on vacation for the last few weeks - today was actually my first day back in class. I went on a three-day tiyul with Pardes to the Golan, which was absolutely beautiful. All of the flowers are blooming, and we had great weather while we were there, so the hiking was a lot of fun. I swam in some waterfalls, which was both freezing and fun. Up until this point most of my tiyulim have been to the desert; I really enjoyed getting to explore a different part of the country.
The week before Pesach, Jesse and I were in Rome and Venice. I was originally planning that trip so that I could see Rachel, but her schedule and mine just didn't match up well at all. Nonetheless, it was a great week - I'd never been to Italy before and I completely fell in love with it. The food, the people, the ruins everywhere - I think I could happily spend months just exploring all of the old churches and art museums. (For photos, go here)
I had a bit of a crazy trip back to Jerusalem from Venice (it wound up taking me 28 hours, 2 trains, 2 planes, a bus, a sherut, and a stop in Latvia), but I made it back in time for seder. Being in Israel for Passover was a very different experience from being in the states - I actually went out for dinner one night and had pasta made out of potato flour, which didn't taste all that great but was a cool experience. I went to a seder that was almost completely Pardes students, and it was really amazing to see everyone connecting our newfound knowledge of Exodus with the seder.
I spent yesterday on the beach in Tel Aviv in celebration of the last day of vacation\Duke winning (I chose not to wake up at 4:30 in the morning to watch the game, but I thought about it pretty seriously), and it was a good way to end vacation. I'm really looking forward to seeing my parents soon, and getting to show them a little bit of my life here.
Other than that, I'm looking more and more seriously for jobs for next year. It's a bit of a slow process right now, but as the days go by I put more energy into it. I had a job interview the other day which I think went pretty well, but you never know with things like that. I have faith that it'll work itself out eventually - it helps that I'm fairly open-minded about what I want to be doing and where I'm willing to live.
And, a few days later, here's the update: my parents are coming on Thursday! That's most of what I'm thinking about right now - getting ready to change my schedule for two weeks, and to spend a little bit of time traveling and sightseeing. I'm also working on some things for Pardes - doing some end-of-the-year transition programming, and potentially some fundraising. I'm also thinking about a trip to Chicago at the end of June\early July, and getting ready for Bonnaroo in June!
I have seven weeks left in Israel, and a lot of things left to do before I leave. I'm looking forward to the experience.