Scenes from the Wall

The northeastern United States did not see the sun for most of this week,

in Jerusalem it is hard to even imagine so much rain:

all the thousands of visitors just get the expected sunny days.

At the Kotel, the Western Wall,

there are old stones

and new signs.

Some days much is

black and white,

but not all is black

or bar mitzvah white,

or army green.

In winter

and in summer

there is color, too.

Pink shirts

and blue hats,

color from balloons

and costumes from around the world

are at the Kotel.

The month of Elul before Rosh Hashana, the New Year,

is an especially colorful time of the year

with even more visitors, and the blasts of the shofar heard every morning.

However, getting to the Kotel

can be very difficult because of the many flights of stairs.

Construction of an elevator has recently been proposed.

Not having to climb the difficult steps will be a great thing for many people

and make the site accessible to many who now cannot enjoy the scenes.

End of summer

While people are suffering and the demand for electricty has hit an all time high,

  some of the flowers are thriving in this weather, the blue Ofrit Hakef  is everywhere.

This summer’s heat and humidity seem endless,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

but the end of summer is quickly approaching,

and the various summer events are coming to an end

with another major event planned on the plaza of the Jerusalem Theater for next week.

 

In spite of the heat, the 25th annual Kite Festival

 was held August 17th at the Israel Museum

the new, refurbished

Israel Museum.

Kites of all sizes and shapes and enthusiasts

of all ages participated.

Parked cars lined the sidewalks near the museum, a sure sign of a successful event.

In contrast though,

the international arts festival has ended and in spite of the record number of tourists here,

the pathways of Kutzot Hayotzer are once again nearly empty.

For most people September 1st is the first day of school and marks the end of summer,

but for others it’s the Beer Festival which is being held now… 

 L’Chaim!

 

Green Light Don’t Go

The Jerusalem streets can be very dangerous.

truck on sidewalk

Many are too narrow for modern vehicles

and sidewalks are often blocked

illegal parked car

forcing people to walk in the street in traffic.

 The traffic lights in the center of town often come in pairs,

traffic lights

   many times the closer light can be red, while the further one is green.

Those unfamiliar with this system often unwittingly step in the cross walk

 in front of oncoming traffic.

cross walk

While some intersections are extremely complicated,

blocked traffic light

the corner of Shalom Aleichem and Keren Hayesod Streets

is especially dangerous.

street crossing in Jerusalem

 The red light visible from most angles

blocked red traffic light

is really green.

 Much more dangerous though,

Jerusalem street

the green light is really red.

big street advertisement

While this traffic light was always hard to see behind the street sign,

 now the large advertising sign blocks the line of vision,

green light

making it almost impossible to see the traffic light.

street corner in Jerusalem

Thousands of visitors walk from Gan Hapa’amon, Liberty Bell Park area

on Keren Hayesod Street towards town,

this is a tragedy waiting to happen.

Many tourists eager to get into town look across the street,

see a green light and continue walking.

This recent sign says it all:

road safety sign

“Be Careful on the Roads-It’s a Matter of Life”

ambulance

and hopefully, not death… or injury.