Good Morning, Israel – Everything Will be Fine!

Things in Israel often don’t go as smoothly as in other countries, but in the end everything will be fine

By Ayala Shalmayev |
Building a house in Israel is an exercise in frustration.
Photo: Ayala Shalmayev

Boker Tov dear readers!

I was born into a Christian family in Switzerland as Tabea. My parents imparted to us a love of the people and the Land of Israel. When I was 18, I went to a kibbutz for seven months, and then kept coming back to Israel and traveling the country with friends and siblings. 

On my sixth trip to Israel, I fell in love with a Jewish Israeli. We got married and lived in Switzerland for several years. During this time I also converted to Judaism and adopted the Jewish name Ayala. Two months after our fourth child was born, we made Aliyah. Our fifth child was born three years later. 

We have now been living in Israel for over six years.

After renting in Modi’in for the first year, the desire for a home of our own grew. We decided to buy into a new project in the nearby settlement of Na’ale. Construction had only just begun when we signed the contract. And ever since we have been on the rollercoaster that is building a house in Israel.


Ihiye beseder – it’ll be fine

Throughout the construction period, we have heard from the foremen and workers again and again the phrase “Ihiye beseder”. It’s a common Israeli phrase meaning “don’t worry, everything will be fine”. But it’s precisely when I hear this phrase that I start to worry!

For example, I found this response entirely unsuitable when I pointed out to a worker that the angle of the walls in our new kitchen was not 90 degrees. “Don’t worry, everything will be fine, in the end,” he said.

It’s been like that the whole time. A wall between the kitchen and living room that we didn’t want was installed anyway. “It’ll be fine, we’ll just break it down.” The wrong doors were installed, but of course, “it’ll be fine, we’ll just replace them later.” A broken ceramic tile in one of the bathrooms really puzzled us. Clearly, it hadn’t been broken after being installed, meaning that they had put it on the wall in pieces.

We were no longer really surprised after finding all the sockets in the kitchen were at different heights. But of course that was also fixed at our urging. My husband is at the construction site at least twice a week, and checks step-by-step. Since our new home is less than a mile from where we currently live, it’s a simple task to keep tabs on the workers.

But why should we worry? Hakol ihiye beseder, everything will be fine, is one of the first Hebrew sentences newcomers to the country learn. 

And now we are looking forward to the upcoming move, which will take place around June. We were originally promised September 2019. Timetables in Israel can be a little less accurate than you are used to in Europe or America.


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