Where am I and what time is it?!

JERUSALEM — It is that time of the year when things start getting complicated for those of us who are mathematically challenged — when something as simple as setting up an appointment in Bethlehem can take four phone calls and three e-mails to ascertain exactly the time the meeting will be held.

Yes, daylight saving time has ended in the Palestinian territories and no, it is not yet that time of year in Israel,  including Palestinian East Jerusalem.

As always, nothing is ever easy here.

The Palestinians changed their clocks at the start of the month and Israel will do so next month just before one of Judaism’s holiest days, Yom Kippur. So we get to juggle between what is known as “Palestinian time” and “Jerusalem time.” It can’t be called “Israeli time” as that would be de facto recognition of Israeli sovereignty over Jerusalem.

Question: If a Bethlehem University student finishes his classes at 4 p.m. and leaves at 4:30 p.m. for his home in Jerusalem, what time will he arrive at his front door?

I don’t know — I just know that this time it has nothing to do with Israeli checkpoints and border crossings.

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