Live always at the edge of poetic possibilty, even in the face of severe prose. - Walter Bruggemann

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Making Ascension

But when I cried out to the Lord, the Lord raised up for me a deliverer,
Eliezer ben Sabba 17. Now Eliezer was a red bearded man.

Really, he is my deliverer. He has delivered me from my (now favorite) smoky, sleazy internet cafĂ© on Yaffo Street. And, from schlepping my laptop all over Jerusalem in search of a wifi connection. He has delivered me from having to check my email at Hebrew University while I sit next to the youngin’s, who are yucking it up and are there solely to check MySpace and FaceBook. How am I supposed to do my finances on line under those conditions or offer some sort of respectable blog entry? (who is this old lady talking?)

Seriously. I owe a very big thank you to Eliezer who went out of his way to mediate between me and the Israeli internet process. I also owe my thanks to Carole, a next door neighbor who is my age, and a rabbinical student at Hebrew Union College. She has sat quietly and listened to me complain for the last month about not having internet. She has offered wonderful empathetic responses at the most appropriate times. She has let me come over to her apartment and use her computer any time that I wanted. Thank you my friends.

This has been a formidable task for me and I’ve been frustrated, to say the very least. Getting internet is a two step process in Israel. I would only get so far between my understanding of the system, my computer savvy (NOT), and the language. Even when Eliezer helped Bezeq, Israel’s mega communications company was not so useful. Oh you’re not Israeli? What? No Visa, only a Master Card? We can’t help you over the phone, you’ll have to come into the store for us to help you. But that didn’t stop Eliezer. He next called HOT another internet company.

He did some fancy talkin’ Hebrew and got me all set up. The HOT lady accepted my debit card and asked for my passport number. She issued a password and username. And then the big question. For security purposes, what is the name of your grammar school? First of all, I had to think. I graduated grammar school 41 years ago, a lot has happened since then. When I finally remembered where I went to grade school, I thought, they’ll never understand this one. I answered, “Ascension”. Actually it was Ascension Lutheran Grade School but I thought, this is way too much personal information for the HOT lady to know.

Eliezer, the red bearded man, looked at me and smiled, rather he began to chuckle. He said to the HOT lady, “Ascension”, and gave me the thumbs up. By this time, Carole got the humor and then I did too. Ascension, in Hebrew, could roughly be translated as aliyah. Aliyah is a very important word in the modern Hebrew language and in the life of a Jew. Literally translated, aliyah means to go up. It’s what Jews do when they move to Israel permanently. They make aliyah. For Christians, the word ascension refers to the ascension of Jesus into heaven after his resurrection. So, not an Israeli citizen, I have made ascension to the internet world.

Even setting up internet can bring you to the thinnest of places where patience and faith, humor and persistence converge making dialogue, understanding and communication a glorious thing! The HOT installer just left. I'm not leaving my computer all day. Thanks be to God I’m online!

And the land will have rest for the next eight months.


chuck said...


sabba17 said...

I told you that Eliezer was good at computer stuff

Suzanne said...

Hallelujah! He's the best!

'laizer said...

Happy to help. ;)