President Time in Jerusalem

President Time in Jerusalem

If it’s February,

it’s time for Presidents again.

In the United States, February means a long holiday weekend

Jerusalem street sign for US President Abraham Lincoln

in honor of the birthdays of President George Washington

US President Abraham Lincoln street sign Jerusalem

and President Abraham Lincoln.

Since I have used these Jerusalem streets signs often,

I went to find something new.

I went looking for the sign where the two streets meet,

image of Presidents Where Washington and Lincoln Streets meet in Jerusalem

only to find, there is no sign on that Jerusalem corner.

Over 6,000 people came from around the world

Binyunei Hauma for #OCsummit2017

for the OurCrowd Global Summit last week.

with Elli Q, one of hundreds of amazing Israeli innovations.

Presidents of companies and leaders of the Startup Nation

networked and shared their ideas and talents.

At another venue, the annual Conference of Presidents

of Major American Jewish Organizations met again this year

in Jerusalem, Israel, after a kosher dinner in the royal palace in Morocco

and a stopover in Cairo to meet President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi.

Reuven Rivlin and Malcolm Hoenlein at Inbal Hotel

President Reuven Rivlin was the first speaker,

and no, the President was not so excited to see me.

Romanian former President Rosen Plevneliev

The former President of Bulgaria Rosen Plevneliev

was in the banquet hall for the opening dinner.

 He really is a friendly person.

Bulgaria President at Beit Hanasi

On his way to visit President Rivlin at Beit Hanasi,

the official residence of the Israeli President,

the former President of Bulgaria and his team,

 stopped, said hello, smiled and posed for photos.

But as usual in February,

 most people are not thinking about all these Presidents,

Candy in the shuk before Purim

they are busy thinking about

costumes, candy for gifts, and meals fit for a king,

Machane Yehudah Market, the shuk, has been ready for weeks.

No matter the weather,

Rainy day with fabric out on street for Purim costumes

colorful fabric for costumes lines the sidewalks on Jaffa Road.

 Purim is coming.

Jerusalem Noisy February Nights

Jerusalem Noisy February Nights

Life in Jerusalem, Israel,

is unpredictable.

No one knows for sure what will happen next.

This week, for example,

the weather changed so many times

it was impossible to keep track.

Starting on Sunday, rain was on and off.

Yafo in rain, empty and wet

 Jaffa Road was wet and deserted.

The red urban installation Varda hung deflated,

like a soggy, wilted flower.

Machane Yehuda Market closed

Inside Machane Yehuda Market, the shuk, 

there were rows of closed shutters,

but umbrellas were out for sale in many places.

A few years ago, the Municipality came up with a plan

to attract people to Jerusalem at night in the winter

with a festival called – שאון חורף – Winter Noise.

 Monday nights in February,

in a different center city location,

people watching giant game projected on wall

people were to come to fill the streets and be entertained.

Last week was the first of the series

held on Shushan and Horesh Streets.

game projected on wall for Jerusalem February Monday night festival

This was a clever projection,

the player was on the sidewalk,

but his screen was many stories high on the wall.

projected images on building at night

Can find me here on this screen?

Winter Noise starts at 7:00 pm and goes to 2:00 am.

light design on wall Jerusalem Israel festival

I like to go early before the crowds

to take photos of these light projections,

street music Jerusalem

and live music in multiple locations.

actors in store window Jerusalem

 Actors performed in this store,

while the audience watched from outside.

Across the street, a new boutique hotel called

The Post, in the old post office building,

The Post music in main room Jerusalem

had live music, food and drink,

and was a great place to sit and warm up.

But most of the Winter Noise takes place

outside on the streets,

street music Jerusalem Israel

with free concerts and entertainment.

Alcohol and food are part of the fun in most locations.

Inside Sobar music for Winter Festival

At Sobar, there was coffee and music,

since it is a new alcohol and drug-free venue.

Sobar for Jerusalem Festival

I spotted a former Jerusalem Deputy Mayor

listening in the audience.

How do I describe the way to Sobar?

Shushan Street Jerusalem Sobar entrance

Go to the end of Shushan Street,

through the gate, to the right and then left.

I often walk around Jerusalem, Israel, at night,

but never on these streets in the dark.

I was really glad I had asked a friend to come along.

black and white images of people watching

Now do you see us here?

 I never would have never ventured in alone

artist Jerusalem

and seen this art gallery and artists’ center.

The first week of Winter Noise was fun.

I discovered and saw many new locations.

But, I am glad I did not post this last week.

Winter Noise was on Shammai and Hillel Streets this week.

There were to be 6 more locations than last week,

but there seemed to be far fewer.

The “entertainment” was not good.

I could not find one thing to photograph and share.

At a conference this week,

City Councilman Aryeh King expressed disgust

with some of the “culture” and entertainment,

and how the city spends its money.

This second week of Winter Noise,

proved him to be all-too correct.

It was reported that he resigned in protest.

I have often questioned what is considered culture here.

I agree with King, this event was tacky and trashy,

and I am relieved I did not encourage anyone to go.

Only good thing I saw,

was that due to the inclement weather, fewer people came.

Each week is different,

 I hope next week Winter Noise gets back on track.

When the rain stops,

runner on Jaffa Road at night

day or night,

you will find someone running on the streets,

in training for the Jerusalem Marathon.

Jerusalem Marathon sign near Tower of David

Signs are up.

 On March 17, come rain or shine,

the streets will be filled with tens of thousands of people,

running and cheering them on.

Jerusalem: Good, Bad and Ugly Week

Jerusalem: Good, Bad and Ugly Week

Jerusalem, Israel,

what a week!

Heavy rains fell over Shabbat,

Washed away ads from heavy rain in Jerusalem, Israel

strong enough to wash away layers of ad posters.

Effects of a municipal strike were being felt,

but I went looking for something good.

After the winter rains,

Branches on tree budding in spring in Jerusalem Israel

buds were popping out on branches.

In the Valley of the Cross there were

Valley of Cross turns green after heavy rains Israel Jerusalem

signs of new growth and small pools of water,

and a favorite sight,

Rakefet growing in stones after winter rain Jerusalem Israel

rakefet, cyclamen, growing in rock structures.

After heavy rain Gan Sacher has puddles and grass turning green Jerusalem Israel park

 Gan Sacher, Sacher Park, had puddles and

 unattended, uncollected garbage bins.

The Old City was not affected,

 as the municipal strike went on for another day,

Garbage strike and bins over full of rubbish Jerusalem Israel mess

but in most neighborhood bins were overflowing.

Cat on top of garbage not collected after strike

Only the street cats and birds were happy.

Overflowing trash on the streets

Near Machane Yehuda market women try to cross Agrippas Street filled with garbage

near Machane Yehuda Market, the shuk,

was not only an ugly sight,

Litter filling Agrippas Road during garbage strike

but unhealthy and dangerous as well.

A friend saw these photos and

thought it was the aftermath of a terror attack.

On Agrippas Street, people waited for buses that did not come,

since buses could only pass through the ugly mess in one direction.

In addition, the mess by the shuk which overflowed on to the streets

Jerusalem light rail track and no trains due to municipal strike

caused the light-rail trains to stop running.

Jaffa Road became a pedestrian mall,

Yafo with no light rain trains on tracks, but one skateboarder in center of road garbage stirke

perfect for the occasional skate boarder.

Thousands trudged along to find transportation.

However, by walking along Agrippas Street,

Graffiti seen from near Machane Yehuda market Jerusalem Israel

I did find a new and colorful piece of graffiti,

and poorly translated signs

are always good for a smile or laugh,

Warning sign with incorrect English written on sign near construction

like this one posted across from Cinema City

near the Supreme Court Building.

near scene of protest police tape after event near Rose Garden Jerusalem

The strike is finally over.

It will take awhile to clear the mountains of trash accumulated

  while the mayor and finance minister feuded.

But at least children are back in school,

so parents can go back to work.

Now back to normal?

It has rained again, and the sun has come out again.

It’s that time of year when the water from the tap

is colder than the water in the refrigerator.

Hope we can go back to complaining about the cold.

Large Hebrew poster for movie at Bet Avi Chai

But if reality gets too ugly again,

 we can go to Beit Avi Chai to see a movie.

It’s free.