Israel at War 2006

Life in Haifa and north of Israel during the 2006 war with Hezbollah in Lebanon

Friday, July 21, 2006

July 21st - More photo problems, more bombs

Passport problems continue while more rockets are falling. This morning I took Yarden's photo to the guarantor to sign and drove to Tel Aviv with it. I took Yarden with me just in case this one was also not good. Good thing I did because it wasn't acceptable. His face was more than 36mm high - the know-it all clerk waved a ruler in front of it last night to show me that it was less than 35mm but took it away before I could check. Frankly, my nerves were so shot from feeling like the marionette of the Canadian passport services and my Ex, that I couldn't look at another photo. I mean, C'MON!!!! You'd think my 11 year-old was a potential terrorist!

See the photo above. This was the first one to be rejected because of the thin pale shaddow on the left of his hair. The small flecks are from the scanner, not the actual photo.

There were three other people in line, also complaining about the photo requirements. They finally gave me the name of a photographer in Tel Aviv who can meet their requirements ("we don't give out the names usually because we don't like to play favorites!" was the idiotic reason they gave for not giving this out in the first place). We had only one and a half hours before noon (the time the consulate closes) to get the new one. Only the studio they recommended was closed for summer holidays. We went to a street where they said we could find some others and finally got it done. Yarden kept his cool, and measured the photos and found the face too large, and we asked them to print it again. Then, the paper was too large, so we asked them to cut it. Once again we dashed back to the consulate and got there at 1 minute to 12. I had to send Yarden up alone to get in on time while I parked.

After that, Yarden invited me for a swim at the country club of his hosts in Tel Aviv. They allow "refugees" from the north to enter for free which is nice, as long as you are invited by a member they still don't want the riff-raff :-). When he asked me to go, it was the last thing I felt like doing, but after the passport service put us through, it was the least I could do. I slept only about 5 hours last night and did not managed to shake the strong feeling of anger and frustration at the forces that were interfering with my plans for a nice trip with my son. Good, thing I accepted, because after only 20 minutes in the pool, I felt relaxed for the first time in 36 hours.

Thanks again Laura and Dan for all your help and hospitality. You were a lifesaver!

By the way, I would love to hear more comments and feedback from readers. Both good and critical.

I am writing this from the bathroom, which is relatively protected as the sirens went off about 10 minutes ago and quite a number of bombs have been falling again. It does put things into perspective. Thanks God we are all safe.



At 21 July, 2006 12:20, Blogger Peter Tuschak in Canada said...


It's Peter. This is awful!!! Anything we can do to help? Our friend is an immigration Lawyer, might have some embassy contacts should Karen ask?

On another note, I was speaking with one of my suppliers (one of the rare Jews in my business), he just returned from Israel and told me the story that 2 or 3 months ago there was a few engineers that came over to Witchita (where he lives) for a aeronotical (excuse my spelling)seminar. As the Jewish community is rather small in Witchita, him and his wife hosted a dinner party at thier place. Who was one of their guests??? YUDI (one of the kidnapped soldiers). What a small world and just goes to show we are all connected, somehow, someway, somewhere.

Hope you are coping


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