Monday, December 21, 2009

The Exodus from Englewood or "Last Train from Poland"

(I continue the tale of our Exodus from America to Israel, picking up the story where I left off. We safely arrived in Israel on December 14 - wife, dog and I - but I have been too busy and too tired settling in to keep the blog updated in real time.)

We suffer from "Last Train from Poland" Syndrome in my family (or at least I do). This is the neurosis that whenever you travel, you have the feeling you are catching the last train from Poland before the Nazis roll in. You don't want to miss this train. This makes travel a tense affair and has been the occasion of much family screaming and travel tensions over the years. This morning, Sunday December 13, I take a Xanax early in the day to help combat the neurosis. We are up not early at all, around 8:30, for last minute packing, good-byes, and loading the vehicle for the trip to the airport.

The original plan was to depart Englewood at 10:00 and arrive at Newark at 10:30 for a 1:30PM flight. This plan is quickly scotched as friends arrive unexpectedly to say their farewells. (What are these people thinking? Nazi Panzer tanks are rolling in to Englewood, and they think I want to stand around and talk to them?! ) However, I grimace and bear it while Pam graciously accepts our friends farewells. In the mean time, the Finkels arrive with their Suburban and take charge of the luggage. Seven huge suitcases, a doggy travel kennel, and numerous carry-ons are hastily loaded into the Suburban while I madly throw any final items into nooks and crannies of the suitcases. It is now 10:40AM, ten minutes past the original planned time to arrive at Newark.

Pam, Liz, Fred, Me, Rebecca, Rachel
One last photo in our gracious host's driveway before the Panzer tanks arrive

We roll out of Englewood around 10:45AM as a cold rain begins to descend. It is a yucky day, but I don't care anymore. Three months of delays are over, we are packed and in the car with Pam, Spot and our friends the Finkels. I don't have to drive, and I am sure all will turn out fine.

Heading out of Englewood on I95 toward Newark Airport, A Hard Rain's Gonna Fall

Let's watch and listen in to this Exodus, 3300 years after the original.

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