Enough politics and protests.
Sun is shining.
Great time to stop and enjoy the flowers.
Jerusalem streets in the city center are covered
with this Brazilian flag being one of the most popular.
Prince of de Ligne of Belgium,
told RJS that his wife is from Brazil.
Brazil seemed to be everywhere last week.
The 2016 Olympics are to be held in Rio, Brazil,
from August 5-21.
Reuven Rivlin hosted a Presidential send off
at Beit Hanasi, the official residence.
The Ambassador from Brazil attended along with
members of the Israeli Olympic Teams.
The participants in the 2016 Paralympic Games
to be held in Rio from September 7-18
were also honored at the event.
Dignitaries posed and smiled around
Sports Minister Miri Regev.
The largest teams in Israel’s history are heading to Rio.
Each athlete has an impressive story to tell
of dedication and training to reach their goal.
Audience members rise when the President enters,
but not the Paralympic athletes confined to wheelchairs.
One woman had a special smile,
her look was beautiful, thoughtful, determined.
I wondered what her story was.
After the event I found out.
Pascale Bercovitch, at age 17, was living in France.
She slipped on ice rushing to school to take an exam
and a train ran over her, severing both her legs.
However, she made aliyah,
volunteered in the army,
married and started a family.
48 Israeli Olympic athletes are competing
in various sports in Rio 2016.
is competing in her third Paralympic games,
in her third sport, kayaking.
If that is not enough for a double amputee,
she was 40 years old at her first Paralympics Games.
Each athlete has an impressive story.
Each Para-athlete has a story.
I had wondered about the woman,
with a radiant face and huge smile,
but never could I have imagined such a story.
Her positive attitude shows us how one
can succeed in Olympic proportions.
All the best to to Pascale,
and all the other athletes off to Brazil.
Summer time in Jerusalem,
and for over 30 years,
the Jerusalem Film Festival
has screened thousands of films.
This year for the first time
there are films being shown in Gan Haatzmaut,
Independence Park, in the Wilf Garden.
Security was so strict,
this is as close as I could get without buying a ticket.
But the main events are usually
shown at the Cinematheque,
where finally for the first time
disabled movie goers can access without steps,
using this newly-built elevator.
I think it is worth going just for the view.
However, the opening night of the festival,
was held in the Sultan’s Pool.
Even the Tower of David, not so far away,
is dwarfed by the size of this outdoor screen.
Minister of Sports and Culture Miri Regev,
was one of the speakers.
Special guest movie director and film star,
Quentin Tarantino received a special award
from Mayor Nir Barkat before the film.
The star of the movie, Emma Suraez,
was on stage to accept flowers.
But as much as there were numerous Tarantino spottings,
I assume Emma could go around Jerusalem without being noticed.
Also on the same night,
Israeli singer Idan Raichel received a special honor
by the B’nai Brith World Center,
in recognition of advancing Israeli-Diaspora relations.
I have seen him surrounded by screaming fans,
anxious to get close enough to take a selfie,
but when Idan entered the hall,
I was the only one who came over.
At least after he was presented with his certificate,
there was more notice.
Different crowds, different reactions.
Miri Regev was booed during her speech
at the Sultan’s Pool by some of the audience.
But three days later,
at the Jerusalem Theater
for the official ceremony remembering
Miri Regev sat in the front row with the dignitaries.
When the program was over
she was surrounded by well wishers
who wanted to be in photos with her.
As the emotional and well-done program
neared the end,
I thought I saw the Prime Minister,
glance at his watch.
The Foreign Minister of Egypt was on his way
to have dinner with the Netanyahus.
While for some this week,
nothing could be bigger than the Euro 2016 football (soccer)
on the television.
There are free movies shown at night,
at First Station and in the Old City,
as the Film Festival comes to a close.
Maybe it’s me,
but just going for the view of the
Walls of the Old City at sunset is wonderful to see.
When was the last time you walked
through the Jerusalem, Israel streets?
Bigger than life,
former Prime Ministers Ben-Gurion and Golda Meir
tower over King George Street.
Behind these decorated tarps,
the old Knesset Building is getting a make-over.
Until two years ago it housed the Rabbinical Courts,
now it is to become a new Knesset Museum.
Across the street,
the Old Mashbir is also getting a total make-over,
and will be the new WeWork office space.
The colors pop out when you turn
to go up Ben Yehuda Street,
not exactly coming up daisies.
But with sunflowers and babushkas.
plus, colored banners
providing shade on Histadrut Street.
Bright Oriental lanterns and a dragon
Ben Yehuda and Ben Hillel Streets.
are the next great photo op,
followed by even more color around the next corner.
Yaffo Road has the light rail lines,
so no overhead decorations there.
Tourists are around,
but not in the numbers the shops would like.
If you keep walking.
over to Yoel Salomon Street,
you will find new umbrellas for summer shade.
cover Shim’on Ben Shetach Street.
While nearby, the Gan Haaztzmaut,
Independence Park, is green.
The grounds are mowed and getting ready for
special new children’s program added this year to
the Jerusalem Film Festival.
With so many new colors on the Jerusalem, Israel streets,
when are you coming to see them?