Saturday, April 30, 2011

Sightseeing with T. In Tel Aviv-Yaffo

My Official Israeli Gallivanting Partner T. and I went to Tel Aviv and Yaffo from Jerusalem the day after Pesach. I braved the awful Jerusalem bus station before deciding to take the sherut (shared taxi) to Tel Aviv instead of the bus. T. and I piled into the back seat of the van with two other adults and a child.

We got to Tel Aviv Central Bus Station - otherwise known as the scariest place in the world, and preceded to find the bus to Yaffo. We met my friend from college and her mother for lunch and shopping. The restaurant was lovely and the food amazing! Thai curry with pumpkin dumplings!

T. and YGirl

M. and her mother

M.'s mother with a statue of Elvis.

After some very high-impact shopping in the shuk, T. and I walked back to Tel Aviv to catch the bus. This was is quickly becoming one of my favorites! We even saw Avigdor Lieberman walking by in his fancy mafia suit. I had to pull T. out of his way for fear that his bodyguard might be over-zealous.

Two guys reenacting the Titanic scene (at least that what T. and I were considering doing there).

Arab kids in doorags, nuns and tall building mean Israel!

T. came back with me to Herzliya and we collapsed from tiredness. A lovely time was had by all!

Jerusalem for Pesach!

I went to The Lovely Rolands for the last day of Pesach in Jerusalem.
But before arriving, I took some really touristy photos!

Touristy Bus Sign

Touristy shot of the Jerusalem Chords Bridge

Poorly shot photo of Gan Sacher (a big park) full of people picnicking and making tiny barbecues.

After arriving at Chez Roland, A. and I went for a walk into the center of the city where I wolfed down kosher for passover, Kitniyot-free frozen yoghurt. We met S. while walking back and said a prayer that is said once a year, during the spring, upon seeing two fruit-bearing trees. Coolness!

We ate a lovely dinner of kosher for passover gnocchi and soup! Then we played Phase 10. I won! Victory!

After a restful night of sleeping (and sleeping in late!) we lunched on leftovers after sunning ourselves in the park and reading. 

In the evening, after chag went out, we went into the city for PIZZA in honor of S.'s birthday. I met up with my partner in Israeli gallivanting, T. We had lots of pizza and some beer and I met some fun new people!

I really love Jerusalem, and I like meeting new people that have inventive, innovating and passionate views on religious observance. Talking with these people strengthens my resolve to keep investing in my spiritual growth through both traditional and new approaches.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

How is this Passover different from other Passovers?

Because on this Passover I am in Israel!

Exhibit A: Wall o'Matzah

Exhibit B: Kosher for Passover cake, rolls and pizza at a local eatery

Exhibit C: Kosher for Passover Nutella

Saturday, April 23, 2011

OOTD: To The Max

I've been noticing my favorite style bloggers embracing the maxi-skirt/dress trend lately. While in Israel these tend to indicate frumness, in the fashion blogger universe these skirts are fully appreciated.


This is my take on it. The skirt was loaned to me by a friend. It is silk and feels wonderful, though it's a little sheer. I wore a slip under it just in case. I wanted to avoid looking too religious OR too goth. I think it turned out rather well.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Argh! I miss...

... Shopping.

Let me explain. Apart from getting new things, I miss how soothing shopping is in the United States. I miss know where to go to buy my t-shirts or my dresses. I miss the comfort of the familiar.

Maybe I'll get some shopping out of the way in Italy!

In the meantime, I am still internet-stalking some beautiful items of clothing and footwear on which I have become fixated. Check these babies out:

I know they look kind of clunky, but look at how cute they are on a real foot:

(How adorable is she!)

ModCloth Out of stock

(It reminds me of this one

I guess I really like blue clothes right now, right?

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Beaten and Bruised, I Trudge Onward...

Oy effing vey, people. Worst day ever!

Today I have two goals:

1) Bring extra towels to my parents' vacation rental for the new tenants and figure out why they are complaining that there aren't enough sheets.

2) Get to my aunt's house for Passover (it starts tomorrow night, y'all!)

No too difficult, right?


First, I had to buy one more towel so I went to the grocery store (they sell all sorts of stuff there). I stood in line for what seemed like ever behind a two women, one of which meandered around the store gathering more things and periodically bringing them back to the line. An old man cut in front of them explaining that he only had one thing to buy (a bag full of beets). I glowered at him while I brandished my one towel. He moved to another line and I flatter myself that I had something to do with that.

Finally, after procuring the towel, I waited and waited and waited for the bus while every bus in all of Israel that wasn't going where I wanted to go drove by. Teenagers were waiting for a bus to the beach and were filling the air with shrieks and a toxic combination of aftershave and perfumes named after pop stars.

The bus was fairly full, and I was kind and considerate (big mistake) so I stood so other could sit. It turns out that this is a rookie mistake. Because as the bus pulling into my stop, my grip began to slide and I fell down the steep bus stairs, dangling by my arm. In Seattle, for the most part people would ask if you are okay. Here, a man shook his head at me and said "I told you! You should have sat down!" (Never mind that I don't remember him saying any such thing.)

It's not rude a$$holes, it's just Israelis!

I took a shared taxi to Netanya, squished into the back corner with my purse, backpack and four towels on my lap while a Russian lady sat directly next to be even though there were other seats. I should have told her to move, but I was saving my strength (I would need it).

It's not inconsiderate, it's just standard Israeli protocol!

I hollered at the driver to get him to stop at my stop and schlepped over to the apartment building. Where a middle aged heavy Russian man answered the door in his underpants. It turns out that we have no shared language what so ever. I held up the towels and he told me that this was his apartment. I left the towels and called the property manager who called another person to come and translate for us. I went into the apartment only to discover that they wouldn't let me count the number of sheets. I explained that I needed to know how many sheets they needed and they swore that there was a child sleeping the room with all the sheets so I couldn't go in. It seems that they thought I didn't trust them about the lack of sheets. Then they started shouting at me in English and Russian:

"We rent apartment without seeing! We give you money without seeing! Last year, not a problem! Kid sleeping in room! This not enough for six people!"

It's not you, it's just disgruntled Russians!

Finally, I said that I would call the property manager and left, exclaiming "THIS ISN'T MY JOB!"

I stomped out to the main street, intent on treating myself for having dealt with this nonsense. I got a taxi and paid way too much for it. I am now sitting in a cafe, having spent way too much money on a late lunch of a cinnamon roll and iced latte (soy milk has protein and vitamins, so it's healthy and balanced, right?).

Here you can see me listening to my favorite radio station from Seattle on the interweb! I was getting happier and happier with every song. My elation culminated in this song:

I hummed and swayed back and forth, smiling contentedly. Maybe today isn't so bad.

"Ha ha!" Laughed the universe!

Then the radio station started their new program where they talk to local community leaders about feel-good community leader things. NO!!! A call-in talk radio show?!? What has become of you 103.7 The Mountain? I leave and this happens? WTF, yo.

 It's not you, it's just Israel.

Thursday, April 14, 2011


I'm too tired to recount the whole story, but I finally bought a mattress.


Wednesday, April 13, 2011

I Feel the Earth!

Woo! Sing it Carole! My homegirl!

I just downloaded Tapestry on iTunes and have been sitting mouthing the words and contorting my face soulfully. Amazing.

Also, I just booked tickets to Italy! I am going in June to see my darling Lamberts and enjoy some Italian food. I mean culture. But really, the food.

Hurrah! I am feeling better!

Cutest Horsies Ever!



Quote of the Day

"Loneliness does not come from being alone, but from being unable to communicate the things that seem important." 

Carl Jung

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

What a day!

I went to a marvelous lecture today at school about Religion and Peace-building efforts in the region. The rabbi giving the lecture was amazing. Intelligent, cultured, with an international perspective and he was so passionate about his work. His emphasis on the authenticity of Judaism including concern for human rights and equality was inspirational. He is part of the Council of Religious Institutions in the Holy Land and does work around the world. He talked about moderate Muslims having a tough time being heard over the fanatic clamor.

My socks have been rocked!

Then we had a class with the marvelous D.A. He is so knowledgeable and has a wonderfully interconnected way of thinking. I even gathered the courage to answer a question that I didn't really know the answer to, but I did my best. I'm pretty sure I bombed the midterm for that class, though, because D.A. remembered my answers and said that I can come to his office hours to discuss it. Oy.

We talked about the 1983 War Crisis and the 50th anniversary of a man sent into space (which is today!).

After class I went for hot cocoa with E. and MayBell. MayBell and I preceded to debate the recent French law forbidding the wearing of the burka and niqab in public. We talked about propriety, assimilation, minority rights, integration, the Democratic Dilemma (the title of one of my courses!), and European versus American culture. It was lovely!

A good day for YGirl in academic heaven!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Being Cool

I have been absolutely floored by this blogger's style and point of view. When I am in the Pacific Northwest next, I will try to hang out with her because she is just darling.

Blogger love!

In her post she discusses why she dressed the way she does and how it make her feel.

"I like fox stoles, and plastic polka dot rain hoods, and sweaters with kittens on them, and ridiculous hats. Do I like them because the latest fashion magazine told me they are cool? No. I say they're cool. In my little world of handmade sweaters and untanned skin, I'm the coolest kid on the block. "