For a tourist, you might find it weird when you visit a new place and people are not doing the things that you’re used to. It can be a culture shock that takes a while to recover from. If you intend to visit Israel, there are things that are only unique to the country and you’re likely to find them somewhere else. Here are some of the unique things that you’ll only see in Israel.
Friday Night Dinner
Friday night is for family and is consummated with sharing a meal. If you’re from the U.S, it is hard for the whole family to come together. This is particularly true when the kids have left home for college. The whole family will meet during Thanksgiving and Christmas. In Israel, it is a totally different case altogether. For starters, everyone is close to each other and there will be no excuse why you can’t make it home for family dinner.
Even if you live in Jerusalem, it is only an hour’s drive away. If Israel tours are composed of back and forth movement, there is no excuse why you shouldn’t be going back home. Even when you don’t get along with the member of the family, it is important that you’re meeting regularly so that you can iron out issues.
Michael Freund says that there is no denying that Israelis excel at so many things. That is why it won’t come as a surprise when the transition rate to institutions of higher learning is the highest in the world. From Nobel prices to unicorn startups, Israel is well represented. One thing that they’re not good at is sports. That is why perhaps they invented the Paddle Ball. This is a game that doesn’t have a loser. The goal of the game is to hit the ball until it falls off. You’ll get accustomed to the noise of the wood heating the ball once you settle in the country. A lot of citizens play it for stress relief.
When one thinks of Israel, the first thing that comes to mind is the war and the constant entanglement with Jerusalem. What a lot of people don’t know is when there was a serious issue with starvation in The 1950s. The country was on the brink of running out of food completely. The creation of a wheat-based rice substitute came as a result of the food problem in the 50s and it was called “ptitim”. It is still a favorite food a lot of Israelis up to now.
Yom Kippur is seen as the holiest day in the whole of the Jewish calendar. It is a day that is dedicated to self-reflection and asking for forgiveness. The majority of the Israelis will go to synagogue to pray. There are some regions in Israel where the Sabbath is considered holier than the Yom Kippur but that is an exception and not the rule. Even if there is no official law on the Yom Kippur, the majority of citizens will observe the day.
Lack of Formality
It might come off as a shock with the lack of politeness among Israelis. It doesn’t necessarily mean that someone is rude but that is just how people talk to each other in the country. The country is founded on being open and direct. You might not appreciate the directness but it is something that you get used to once you settle in the country.
The army plays a big role in the culture and history of the nation. Despite Israel being a small nation, it boasts of having one of the most powerful armies in the world. It is the only country in the world where every adult is expected to serve in the army for at least two years. Everyone in the country has military experience. This could be due to the fact that it is such a small country and people might be required to arm themselves in case of an external attack.
Researching a country before you visit will make the whole experience worthwhile. You get to know of the culture and what they hold dear so that there is no misappropriation when you finally visit. There is no excuse for ignorance when there is a lot of information on the internet. Make sure to research the places that you will be visiting. Planning early is usually recommended so that you’re not doing everything in a rush when you finally decide to visit Israel.