There is a mall in the center of Tel Aviv that could easily be called a life sized maze. It has tunnels, half-levels, ramps, bridges and at least 6 different entrances.
Casually referred to as “The Center,” Dizengoff Center spans over a very busy street and is known as the mall that was designed by someone who was likely stoned out of their mind.
Everyone seems to adapt their own personal technique for tackling the navigation of Dizengoff Center – I always enter through the same set of doors, follow the same route and do my best to manage from there.
Last week, I went to meet a friend there (already a risk – how would we EVER find each other if we didn’t enter together??). My usual point of entry is one of the farther ones and on this particular day, it was rainy and freezing cold so I decided to take my chances and go in through the closest entry way. I was also texting, and (like a careless teenager) wasn’t really paying attention to where I was walking.
Then something amazing happened (after I finally put my phone away) – I looked up and realized that I had (semi)blindly and totally unmindfully arrived at the exact location that I needed to get to.
I know it’s not much, but it is a huge victory for me to be able to brag that I not only maneuvered my way through Dizengoff Center (which is an achievement on it’s own), but that I did so while not even being attentive.
It’s the little things that count – and cracking the maze that is Dizengoff Center was a big moment for me. As weird as it sounds, that moment made me realize that hey, I’m not just some American trying to get by in Israel (as my blog boasts), but that I am an American with Israeli citizenship and that I AM getting by in Israel.