Jerusalem: Wet, Windy and Wonderful

In Jerusalem, Israel,

it was a wet and wild week.

On a clear day on a walk into town,

Street scene Jerusalem Israel

I found this interesting door, but did not enter.

Man blowing shofar and son watches and soldier passes by

A man was blowing a large shofar in front of

a gift shop on Ben Yehudah Street.

Nearby,

Israeli security women at lunch on Ben Yehuda

 female border police officers were having a lunch break

Arab girls shopping in Jerusalem Israel

as these two young women were shopping.

But the wet weather this past week

Rainy day in Jerusalem Israel, dark, wet and cold

often made for dark and dreary photos.

Walls of Old City seen through rain covered window at Begin Center Jerusalem Israel

Can you tell those are  the walls of the Old City

through rain drops on the Begin Center’s windows?

After heavy rains

Water after heavy rain in Jerusalem Israel

 this unsightly puddle remained.

Broken IKEA umbrella in street garbage bin after heavy rain.

This IKEA umbrella could not withstand the Jerusalem weather.

IKEA is to open another Israeli store in Beer Sheva.

When it rains and the wind blows,

it’s best to forget using any umbrella.

Besides the weather,

Rubbish bin overflowing with trash during Jerusalem strike

trash piled up in bins during a brief strike.

which closed Agrippas Street with mountains of mess.

The only good part of it was that it was short and soon cleaned up.

However,

while the weather and strikes made news,

there were good things happening too.

International visitors gathered to celebrate weddings,

bar mitzvahs and bat mitzvahs, and more.

Off the Jerusalem streets,

in Beit Hanasi, the Israeli President’s Residence,

another 929 Bible Study group was held.

Beit Hanasi for 929 study group

The chapter of the day was

 from Shir HaShirim, the Song of Songs,

read by actor and radio announcer Dan Caner.

He read beautifully.

Rabbi Benny Lau speaking at Bible Study lesson at Beit Hanasi

Rabbi Benny Lau and President of the Israeli Supreme Court Esther Hayut

were at the head of table with President and Mrs. Rivlin.

929 Shir Hashirim study at Beit Hanasi

This is the 16th time the Rivlins have hosted

the daily Bible study initiative.

The main hall was filled with guests as speakers

elaborated and studied the text.

Another closed event was held at the King David Hotel.

King David Hotel lunch for NATO Ambassador countries in Jerusalem Israel

Ambassadors to Israel from the NATO countries.

had lunch with the Israeli Prime Minister.

Wet and wild weather

left the skies clear and clean and blue,

and it was hard to figure out what to wear.

Will it be hot or cold?

No one knows what will happen next .

But of one thing you can be sure,

Flowers on display in King David Hotel lobby

the flowers in the King David Hotel lobby,

rain or shine, hot or cold outside,

 will be impressive.

Under-21 Championship Final and Tomorrow

The marathon of big events over the past two weeks,

Jerusalem Lights, Formula 1 Road Show,

and Hebrew Book Week, have ended.

Though it also began the beginning of June,

the UEFA Under-21 Championship Finals are still going.

The Israel-England game that was played at Teddy Stadium

attracted over 22,000 soccer (football) fans.

Many former Brits living in Israel were conflicted,

so they cheered for both sides.

Though Israel won, they still did not go on to the next round.

photo playing soocer

In the middle of Ben Yehuda Square,

usually the scene of street musicians, 

 this Under-21 Championship set-up appeared instead.

image kids playing soccer game

Playing this soccer game did not seem like the best exercise,

photo playing sports on wii

and gotta love these active sportsmen.

But I was glad I came back later

soccer ball practice image

to see that some young people were actually kicking  soccer balls

image boy with soccer ball

and some were using their heads.

UEFA under 21 Championship

Look out world,

here comes another generation of Israeli soccer players.

The European soccer championship game,

Italy vs. Spain, is being played tonight at Teddy Stadium in Jerusalem,

 Spain could win back to back victories.

Update final score: Italy 2- Spain 4.

At the same time, at the Jerusalem International Convention Center

Israeli Presidential Conference

is the opening of  #Tomorrow13, the Israeli Presidential Conference.

 5000 delegates have come from around the world to attend.

 Tonight is a huge 90th birthday celebration

for Israeli President Shimon Peres, with Dr. Barbara Streisand,

(she got an honorary doctorate from Hebrew University yesterday),

former President Bill Clinton, Prince Albert of Monaco

and other celebrities, like Robert Di Nero.

It is harder to get a ticket than to the Barak Obama’s speech in Jerusalem!

But I wonder which event will have more home viewers?

So much happening on the streets of Jerusalem,

you do not have to be here to see the diversity!

Purim, Purim and still Purim?

I used to think that if Purim was more than one day, it would be easier,

as spreading out the celebration would make it less intense and less tiring.

Oh, was I wrong!

Purim holiday celebrations begin early in Jerusalem, Israel,

and continue well after others have ended.

While the rest of the world went back to work,

Jerusalem was still in full holiday mode.

Purim festival photo, Purim in Jerusalem

Many synagogues and Megillat Esther readings were colorful events.

Purim celebration photo, costumes

This year zombies and witches roamed the streets at night.  

Purim costume picture, Jerusalem photo

There were some really great shades of hair: blue, purple,

Purim costume,

and fluorescent green. 

Hurva synagogue, Israeli soldiers, Jerusalem photo, J Street

These Israeli soldiers were wearing green too, as they sat in front of the

  Hurva Synagogue listening to their tour guide, they were the real thing.

Purim costumes, Jerusalem photo

But who here is in a Purim costume?

Purim costumes children, Purim Jerusalem, photos costumes

Sometimes it was easy to tell the costumes,

Purim in Jerusalem, costumes

but other times it was not so easy to decide 

Purim in Jerusalem, Jerusalem

who in Jerusalem was dressing up for Purim.

Purim mask photo, Jerusalem images

 I am pretty sure this was a mask.

Purim colorful hat, Jerusalem on Purim

 Often a hat was enough

Purim hat image

to share the festive mood.

street actors photo, Jerusalem on Purim

Streets actors on stilts performed in Mamilla Mall,

Purim costumes photo, adults in costume, Jerusalem photography

but they were not the only big people in costumes.

Purim costumes in Jerusalem

For fancy dresses of all sizes, 

Purim in Jerusalem photo, Jerusalem photographs

Purim was a colorful time,

Purim in Jerusalem image

 celebrated

costumes purim.

 in many ways.

Purim photo, Jerusalem photo

Smurfs were popular – this one was a head turner,

Purim in Jerusalem

as was this hair cut.

men in costumes, Purim image adults , Jerusalem photos

Purim, a time of costumes,

Purim costume, Jerusalem photo

 hair and smiles,

 food and feasting and drinking.

And as every year on Purim, I am fascinated how many

Palestinian family in Jerusalem

 Arab families are out

arab girls

sharing the same streets.

Until next year, 

Purim sameach on bus, Happy Purim sign on bus, Jerusalem photo purim

Happy Purim. 

Still not enough?

Then you can see more photos here.