15 Hanukkah Menorah Favorites Burning Brightly from Jerusalem

15 Hanukkah Menorah Favorites Burning Brightly from Jerusalem

The sun was shining brightly on the eighth day of Hanukkah.

The bright blue skies awere scattered with white puffy clouds

over the cold Jerusalem streets.

There were so many hanukkiot being lit for the past 8 days,

it was not easy, but here are 15 of my favorites.

Chanukiah on last night of Hanuka

On the last night at home,

these olive oil flames burned brightly.

Knesset building had Chanukiah on top eight lights on last night

The electric lights over the Knesset

were clearly visible next to the Israeli flag.

Chauniak Lights on poles for Hanuka

The electric light street decorations

were in different locations this year,

but they are always a favorite sight.

Menorah on street corner in Jerusalem Israel

Chabad menorahs seemed to be on every corner,

Menorah on top of car saying happy chanukah

and some were on top of cars.

Again this year in Mamilla Mall

Hanukah menorah in Mamilla Mall

 a special Chabad hanukkia

Lighting menorah in Mamilla Mall crowd music and dancing

attracted large crowds every night.

Jerusalem Mamilla Mall chanukah menorah

Selected guests were honored with lighting the lights,

from lone soldiers to victims of terror.

Every night there were music and sufganiot for all.

Near the entrance of Beit Hanasi,

the Israeli President’s Residence,

Chanukiah outside the Israeli President's house

stood a new hanukkia with the Israeli state emblem

wishing all a Happy Hanukkah.

Chaunka menorah

Whether made of glass and colorful and lit inside,

Jerusalem lighting chanukiah outside OldCity

or simple and lit outside on the street,

Old City Western Wall candle lighting

or flames rising high above the Kotel, 

the Western Wall, as on the fifth night,

the variety and quantity of hanukkiot was astounding.

Crowd near Western Wall for chanukah menorah lighting and blessings.

Thousands came in the evening to the Kotel,

for the lighting of the Hanukkah Menorah.

Hanukkah menorah at Western Wall

It was hard to get a clear photo,

as one after another men climbed up to pose for photos,

in front of the burning lights.

On my way home through the Old City

Hanukah night in Jerusalem Rova

there was singing and dancing as lights

Menorahs lining street of Rova, Jewish Quarter Jerusalem Old City

and more lights lined the paths.

Menorah at Old City Walls Jaffa Gate

This old electric menorah near Jaffa Gate,

was as popular as ever,

Chanukah in Jerusalem, Israel

but it paled next to the light projection on the nearby wall.

But, the most unique menorah I saw this year

was the one lit at Yad Vashem

Krakow menorah lit at Yad Vashem by Rabbi Israel Meir Lau

 by former chief Rabbi Yisrael Meir Lau,

a child survivor with an extended family photo in view.

Krakow menorah at Yad Vashem on third night of Hanukkah

 On the third night of Hanukah,

the centuries-old Krakow menorah candles burned brightly,

 for over two hundred international Jewish leaders

gathered in Jerusalem, Israel, for an educator’s conference.

Hanukkah is a holiday celebration of survival in ancient times.

But it is also a good time to appreciate the modern miracles

of survival and rebirth and new light.

That’s it,

until next year,

still not sure how best to spell in English,

Hebrew sign on bus in Jerusalem Israel Old City

Hanuka sameach!

Art and Music Brighten Jerusalem Winter

Art and Music Brighten Jerusalem Winter

Weather.

What a wild week of weather!

It was so warm and sunny one day,

that after lunch at the Malha Tech Park,

people lounged at cafe tables in the mid-day sun,

reluctant to return to their offices.

Then,

rain in Jerusalem Israel

came the rain,

along the light rail line on Jaffa Road,

Yaffo in rain

at least this umbrella brightened the morning.

Yesterday, hail pounded down, along with high winds.

The challenge became to aim an umbrella so the wind

would not blow it away or inside out.

However, there is plenty

of music to brighten cold winter nights.

Art and Music in Jerusalem Israel

While restaurants come and go,

a new Art and Music Gallery opened on Yoel Salomon Street.

The Jerusalem Jazz Festival and the annual

 Hullegeb Festival of Ethiopian music, and more events are this week.

Plus it’s another December weekend of Hamshushalim,

Jerusalem winter festivals Hebrew signs

with dozens of entertainment and cultural options

at discounted prices, and many for free.

When it comes to discount options or free,

nothing tops the Yad Sarah organization.

“What’s  the catch? What’s the cost?” everyone asks.

 I took a tour this week.

The main equipment supply room

Yad Sarah disabilities

brims with medical assistance items,

24/7 emergency calls

the emergency hot line operates 24/7,

while the art therapy room has everything,

Old sewing machine at Yad Sarah art room

 from this vintage sewing machine

Patient art at Yad Sarah

to cabinets full of handmade pieces of art.

Thousands volunteer and are serviced by Yad Sarah,

its list of services and items is massive.

If their supply of hospital beds were piled up

it would be higher than Mount Everest!.

Tours are free, and recommended for all.

What’s the catch?

Yad Sarah has everything but adequate parking.

To end on an upbeat art note:

Besides the growing Bezalel Academy of Art and Design,

a new art center is to be built in downtown Jerusalem.

The $50 million complex is to be called

the Jerusalem Campus for the Arts.

I missed the rainbow yesterday morning,

but there is much happening to brighten

these Jerusalem streets.

Israel: Land of Diversity and Extreme Contrasts

Israel covers a tiny bit of land.

You can drive the entire country from north to south in less than a day.

We spent more time in the car trying to get from New York City

to Washington, DC, years ago for a Thanksgiving Day wedding.

Taking a trip outside of Jerusalem, Israel, this past week

inspired this post of amazing contrasts.

All photos are from this week,

a week in a month of no holidays.

Kfar Etzion old igloo buildings

The old white stone “igloos” of Kfar Etzion,

perched on a mountain blend into the wintry sky.

While construction across from the Jerusalem Theater

Construction near Jerusalem Theater

goes deep, deep into the earth.

This used to be my shortcut path,

soon it will be sight of a modern luxury tower.

Conference at IDI Riskin, Liat Collins, religion

Religious diversity was the topic of discussion

at the Israel Democracy Institute,

while poverty was discussed at Mishkenot Sha’ananim.

Taub Center conference poverty Elie Elalouf

The Taub Center conference concluded with

a panel and MK Elie Elalouf’s Knesset poverty report.

We hear endless stories of barriers and borders.

Baptism site in Jordan River Israel Jordan border

How does that compare to the river border with Jordan?

On the other side of that simple pool rope is the Kingdom of Jordan.

The man in the white top on the left had just immersed in the river.

Can you spot the soldier on guard duty?

One huge contrast is the sky in summer and winter.

Cloud scene on Israel with windmills

While in summer the sky is pure blue,

the winter sky is often cloudy.

Through these low clouds on a mountain top,

you can almost see the windmills on the right.

Desert scene with cloudy sky

Drive out of hills of Jerusalem,

you will find the desert.

No rain, but blue skies and white clouds.

These two white vehicles were parked,

one day I may photo shop them out.

This was an everyday scene at an Israeli rest stop,

with the prerequisite camel nearby.

Bet Shean park Roman ruins

The ancient Roman ruins at Bet Shean park

are worthy of a blog post of its own.

It is only a short drive to modern Tel Aviv.

And certainly do not forget the diversity

Kez costume and Ethiopian Israel woman

of the Israeli population.

Ethiopian-Israelis are integrating

as judges, rabbis and members of Knesset,

but this man is just in costume, he is not a real Kes.

The clouds make for amazing sunsets this time of year.

My friends were raving one night at this scene,

Sunset and cloudy sky

so I took a little photo liberty with this photo,

adding a some color to the scattered clouds.

One more before I go,

 the number and diversity of the street musicians,

old and young, male and female,

Street music religious man

religious and who knows what, is amazing.

 Some performers may be down on their luck.

However, from the streets of Eilat to Israeli stardom,

Jerusalem Jewish Media Summit 2016 Gat Brothers

the Brothers Gat were the entertainment for the gala opening

of the Jerusalem Jewish Media Summit 2016,

performing for international Jewish editors, publishers

and journalists.

For a “quiet” month with no holidays,

there was so much happening,

I’m glad I had a few moments for the “Sounds of Silence.”