5/10/15

Changes

This Thursday will be my last day at JDC where I've worked three years, and on Sunday I'll be starting a new job, as a translator for PMW. 

I'm very excited about the new job, both about my position as a translator, and about the company I'll be working for, and I'm looking forward to it.  But as with all changes, it isn't simple. I'll miss the people I've worked with over the last three years at JDC.   And there is no way for me to know for sure how the new job will be until I start. As with all changes, it's a leap into the  unknown, a leap of faith. I think and hope it will be good, but time will tell. 

5/4/15

New and Exciting Job

In a week and a half I'll be starting a new job as a translator and I'm very excited about it. For years I've translated freelance, and often as part of my job. But I never defined myself as a translator, despite the fact that I am really good at it.

I know I am good at translating, and that I have excellent language skills. However in my present position I finally gained the confidence in my skills to fully own them, and to recognize myself as a translator - after all, I needed to recognize myself as a translator before I could expect anyone else to recognize me as such.

In my  position at JDC, I worked for an amazing man, Ralph Goldman. He was a man of vision and a man of action, and played a major part in the building of Israel, and in the guiding of JDC, an organization which helps Jews throughout the world, and works to strengthen all populations in Israel.

I learned many important things from Ralph while working for him. And in addition, I gained confidence in my skills, greatly encouraged by his appreciation. He was not a person to express appreciation or give compliments lightly. When he expressed appreciation of something, you knew he truly meant it.  He had a wonderful command of both English and Hebrew, and was very precise in the words he chose in all of his communication and writing .  Therefore his appreciation of my language and writing skills in both Hebrew and English meant a lot to me, and gave me more confidence in my skills, to the extent that when I saw an ad for a position as a translator, with stated requirement of at least a B.A., I had the confidence to apply despite not having a degree, writing to them that despite not meeting this requirement, I have all the skills they are looking for, and asking they give me a chance. They did, and I got the job.

Thank you Ralph.

4/21/15

Yom HaZikaron and Yom Ha'Atzmaut As an Olah

Yom HaZikaron is one of the days that really reminds me I'm an olah, and not a native Israeli. I mourn with the rest of the country for our fallen, but unlike most Israelis, no members of my immediate family have served in the army, and no members of my family fell in service. My girls did National Service, and they have some "war stories" (bullet passing over head as riding bus, living under bombardment of bombs, getting caught outside at night during bomb siren and walking into nearest house - which happened to be Arab, etc.) but it's not the same.

This goes for Yom Ha'Atzmaut too, the other side of the coin. Without the personal connection to the army, I don't think my connection is quite as deep, It's getting there, deepening as the years go on - but the army connection is so integral to the full Israeli experience, to being a full, responsible member of the family.

Perhaps when my grandchildren go into the army I'll finally really feel fully Israeli, feel the full depth personally.

It's all in the attitude.

Today I was stuck in a serious traffic jam on the way to work - commute took nearly two hours longer than usual. A few minutes after getting off I saw a young neighbor of mine and asked him if he was on the same bus. He said yes and then, with a big smile, added "It was cool seeing how long it could take!"