Galilee in Green

Springtime in Israel is a great time to travel north. After an hour and a half of driving, you are in the green mountains of the Galilee. After some rain in the winter, and before the hot summer sun turns the green to brown, the time is right for a visit.

Springtime in Israel is a great time to travel north. After an hour and a half of driving, you are in the green mountains of the Galilee. After some rain in the winter, and before the hot summer sun turns the green to brown, the time is right for a visit.


My girlfriend and I took a short weekend vacation and traveled mostly around Mount Miron. Now, at the end of April, many flowers can be seen. The peak of the blossom was already behind us, but we could see lots of flowers.


For a change, this time we stayed at a Druze village called Beit Jan. The breakfast was special: typical Druze dishes replaced the regular Israeli breakfast. Another difference was the price, which was approximately 30% lower than our last vacation (at a Jewish “Zimmer”). Other than that, it was the same 4 walls, a bed, and a jaccuzi. Not something extremely “authentic”.

Anyway, we had a nice stay at Beit Jan and did some nice trips in the mountains (got my sunburn).

Prepare your blog for the war

I’m almost there! Even if there is no war around the corner this summer, I made some refreshments ’round here.

I’ve changed the theme to something more pleasant, and made some other changes. Among the changes: A Contact Me form, no more Google Ads, better support for Hebrew posts, shorter links, a floating upper menu (good for exploring the photo gallery) and some more changes.

If you want to follow the stuff I write, you are welcome to add the RSS feed to your reader. If you don’t speak Hebrew, you are most welcome to read only posts in English via RSS.

If you aren’t into RSS, there’s a mail subscription thingy, and an email subscription service for English posts (no Hebrew).

There are a few unfinished things, but all in all, I hope that now my nonsense is more readable. If hostilities break out, I must have the best tools for reporting!

A Holocaust Song

Today is the national remembrance day for the holocaust. The radio plays the same old songs over and over again. Most of them are too old, and they just remind of standing up for hours, rehearsing for the remembrance day ceremonies at school.

I want to offer a different song. The lyrics aren’t related to the holocaust. It’s the music. When I hear this song, I always imagine that I’m hiding in the freezing cold Polish winter under the barracks, trying not be heard by the Nazi patrol that is barking and flashing their torches. The howling wind hides the sound of my teeth.

Nick Cave – Stranger than Kindness.

As a descendant of European Jews that immigrated to Israel in the 50s, many of my relatives were murdered during the Jew’s (and others’) holocaust of WW2. For me it’s something that is mostly in the history books. For my grandmother, and the whole generation, WW2 is still something that they keep talking about. Many conversations feature “I was in that war”.

I’ve visited Auschwitz about 2 and a half years ago, during a trip with my family. That day was a bright warm sunny day. Green fields, birds and empty barracks. That was weird. The might of the evil that happened there in the 40s contrasted the pleasant present. Despite the nice weather, it was quite a hard experience.

Auschwitz, Poland

Today, there are terrible things happening around us. No, not as horrifying and systematic as the Nazi extermination machine, but do we realyy care or do something about the major massacres in Darfur or the concentration camps in North Korea? Never again?

Happy Passover (it needs an upgrade)

Tonight we are celebrating Passover. I’m getting tired of the same ritual year after year. The story stays the same with the text’s old style. I wish it would be upgraded.

Since the Israelites left Egypt, we had lots of trouble with other nations who held us as slaves or in a lower class. And today, for the last (almost) 40 years, we are holding most of the Palestinians under occupation.

So we can read the Hagada (the story of Moses leading us out of Egypt) over and over again (in my family we read until the “eat now” section). I think that we should open our eyes to more modern history, and also look into the present.

Passover is also about getting together with family relatives, being the most family centric holiday in the calendar. Something personal: this will be the first Passover without my grandfather, who passed away last summer. He was always at the head of the table, managing the “Seder“. I think that his absence will be felt tonight.

Anyway, I enjoy the holiday from work, and as a very secular Jew, I will not skip bread, pizza or beer.

Happy holidays and Hag Sameach!

Spreche ich Deutsch?

Last week I’ve received a letter from Goethe institute in Tel Aviv. A new semester is about to begin, and they sent a notification about the courses that they’re offering. I’m thinking if to enroll or not.

Knowing foreign languages is wonderful thing. It enriches the mind and the world of associations. It enables speaking with different people in their own language and extending the small talk in English to further topics.

I have studied German in the past. I took two elective courses in the university and then neglected it for two years. Later on I attended 3 courses in Goethe Institute, the official place to learn the German language. With these courses I’ve reached a certain level of certification (finished A level). But yet again, I haven’t been in class for a year and half or so.

Since then, I have tried to arrange meetings with my classmates to practice the language. It’s best to speak with people that are the same level. I had only one success, in which after half an hour, we switched to Hebrew. I must say that I wasn’t pushing really hard to make it.

In my trip to Peru, I met some German tourists, but I didn’t feel confident enough to chat in German. They speak excellent English, so why bother. And as I learned more Spanish, it was harder to use German. I think that these languages occupied the same place in my brain…

The last time that I did use the language was during the war in the summer. Through the Blacklabor activity (Hebrew), I wrote a very very naive (and foolish) letter to Chancellor Angela Merkel, calling her and the rest of the world to help out in stopping the fighting. It appears after the English text here.

So, I have 2 weeks until the semester begins, enough time to think it over…

Studieren oder nicht studieren? Dass ist die Frage.