Eilat and back

In the queue for Eilat

Susan and I were in Eilat for Sukkot. We had a very restful time, though Susan’s sore back and the tummy bug she picked up made it less than a perfect break for poor her. There was a bit of an adventure, too, of which more in a moment. Right now, things are busy on the work front, so blogging time may be limited. However, I want to share a couple of our experiences.

We drove down. The journey was easy until the last 5 km which took about 45 minutes because of roadworks. See the picture in the heading? That’s us in a nice queue of traffic. Now look closer.

What queue? what road?

The cars highlighted in red were some of those drivers who did not want to wait in the queue; they drove off road, through roadworks, up hills of sand, and off into the distance. If I had been driving a 4×4 I might have been tempted, but the battering some drivers were giving to their cars cannot have been good.

You might be asking why there were roadworks before this major holiday. It turns out that the local authority had a budget problem; they had not spent some of their budget and if they did not spend it, they would lose it. So, they used it. Never mind the crap timing. It is ridiculous that such an inefficient practice still persists. If a local authority does not spend its budget, the LAST thing that should happen to it, is that it should be punished. But, hey, that’s why I never became a politician.

We arrived at the hotel, eventually, not long before the holiday. It was mobbed with lots of guests checking in. We thought we would be ok because we had a club membership that let us stand in a special queue. Unfortunately, “special” meant that we spent 20 minutes behind one couple with a long, long and difficult check in. (No idea why.) This was the club check in with just one person serving. The regular check in had 5 people serving and their queue moved much faster. So, when we got to the front, Susan said – in answer to the query about how we were – “Not happy that we have been waiting 20 minutes. You should have more people serving here.” The response? “You could have been waiting 2 hours, you know.” Sound of jaws hitting the floor… Susan sorted him out.

I’ll pass over the terrible shooting that happened at the hotel next door. So sad.(And so close.) Eilat is full of youngsters on programs working in the hotel industry. As well as those North Americans on Jewish Agency schemes, the State pays a cash bonus to kids to do such jobs after they leave the army, as the demand for workers far exceeds the supply. (The hotel industry employs a lot of “illegal” immigrants, getting special permission to do so. The demand for workers remains high.)

Because I had been having trouble with the car battery, I took the car out on Thursday night for a ride to make sure the battery was ok and give it a charge. Lucky. The gearbox started showing a  fault and the car was not running well. On the Friday morning Рwhen the garage was closing at noon for Shabbat Рwe took the car to the local Champion Motors dealer. In brief, they checked it out, ordered up the necessary parts, had them flown down for Sunday morning, and had the car repaired and back to us before lunch time. Wonderful service. Thank you, and take a bow, Yosi and Natali at Champion Motors.