Visa and Departure Issues

We found out on Sunday, a week before we left for Israel, that we needed to travel to the Israeli Consulate to pick up our student visas in person. By Monday at 4 PM, we had word that we needed to be at the Israeli Consulate in Washington DC by Tuesday morning. We packed in a rush, grabbed Rafi from daycare, and we were off. After a quick stop in Pittsburgh for dinner, we finished the drive around midnight in Maryland at a friend’s house (Thank you Leshin family for putting us up). The whole time, before Rafi fell asleep, we explained that we were travelling to DC just so Rafi could ride the train.

The next day Rafi was excited. He woke up early ready to go. We had breakfast with the Leshin boys. Then off to the embassy. Rafi was so happy on the train ride to the embassy and back. He loves telling the story of how we rode the train:


Our time at the consulate was relatively painless. Only took about 30-40 min, and we had our visas. However, there were a couple mix-ups. For example, Rafi’s birthday on the visa is June 4, 1917 (actually born on Nov. 14, 2009). Also, we were only issued a 1 month without in/out privileges. According to our contact at the Technion, the visas will be extended after arriving, and Rafi’s birthday was changed in their computer system. Anyways, it should provide additional interesting adventures once we arrive to Israel.

Then we turned around and were home by dinner on Tuesday.

After finishing with the travel to and from the Israeli embassy to get our visas, it was time to finish packing our house. We want to publically thank both of our parents, Andrew, Teresa & Ross, Harriet, and Missy & Mark for storing most of our stuff. Other than what they are keeping in storage for us, we are travelling with 4 boxes, 3 suitcases, and 6 carry-ons. Also, because of the amazing help of our friends, we finished packing up on time, Sunday. Thank you to everyone who helped us pack (including Teresa, Ross, Becca, Edgardo, Andrew, Mark, Yevgenia, Mike, Adam, Kelli, George, Engel, Josh, and Mel. Please forgive me and feel free to yell at me if I forgot a name). Also thank you to the Gelfands for babysitting Rafi all day Sunday to allow us to clear our house.
After finishing packing, these pictures and videos were taken of Rafi in our empty house:

Finally, we start our travels to Israel. First stop, overnight with the Gold family. Second stop, overnight with my parents. Then, the long flight to Israel.

-Jeff

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