Two grad rockets fired by jihadists in Sinai landed in Eilat .
Lately, it seems that every time I do a blog post there is a new rocket attack.
By now everyone has heard of the bombings in Boston.
The first year I lived in Boston I remember how surprised I was that
so many things shut down for the running of The Boston Marathon,
it is certainly not just another race in Boston.
So too, unless you are in Israel it is hard to imagine
how business as usual completely stops
for Yom Ha’atzmaut, Israel Independence Day.
However, there was so much to do and so many events
that it was hard to decide where to go and what to attend.
First, were many prayer services,
which followed the solemn Yom Hazikaron observances.
Then the serious partying for Yom Ha’atzmaut began.
One of the largest musical religious services was at The Great Synagogue
where Sephardic Chief Rabbi Shlomo Amar was the guest speaker .
A big favorite for most everyone is the aerial fly over
which was almost cancelled this year due to weather conditions.
Deciding which photos out of hundreds to share has been hard,
but here are a few that hopefully will show what is so special
about this time of year in Jerusalem.
The large flags draped down tall buildings.
The small flags on so many cars
and some buses.
Flags were out in the old Nachlaot neighborhood
and the new Arnona neighborhood.
Some neighborhoods had so many
flags on display,
they even lined the roof tops.
And of course flags are hung on the streets near and on the Knesset Building.
Yom Haatzmaut also marks the start of BBQ season, the time for mangals,
and grilling essentials are displayed everywhere.
Gan Sacher, Sacher Park, is usually is filled with tens of thousands
of people on Yom Ha’atzmaut.
Tents were set up for protection from bad weather by those
who came early to stake out their claim for a good spot.
Usually the choice spots are in the shade, but
this year it was so windy and cold that a spot in the sun was preferred.
The park was not nearly as crowded as most years,
making more space for those grilling meat
and having the traditional foam fights.
I could go on and on, but that would make this post really late.
Yom Haatzmaut night is one of only three nights a year
when noise is not restricted at 11:00 pm.
There were thousands of parties,
many with young people singing and dancing,
and many ending with firework displays.
I spent most of my day with one of my favorite groups,
shown here as these lone soldiers posed at the end of a major mangal.
From around the world these young people came to serve in the IDF
and now they help other new soldiers
who have also left their homes and families to serve their people.
They are the promise of the future.
As Boston comes to grips with a deadly terror attack,
I hope that they never have to learn get used to bombs as Israelis have.
Happy Independence Day.