Jerusalem Center of the World

The observation gleaned from Mark Twain’s Notebooks and Journals that “Jerusalem is mournful, dreary, and lifeless,” is certainly out of date.

The world’s attention on Jerusalem focuses in with a microscope intensity and scrutiny like no other place on earth.

Ah, Jerusalem the Center of the World!

Yes, that is the name of the sculpture in Teddy Park by David Breuer-Weil and if you look closely you can see my reflection there in the center.

It was good to get out and walk again this week, between the winter rains.

I love the orchids that grow inside this time of year,

while the trees are in bloom outside.

The new Jerusalem winter bus stop sign snowman was pristine white.

Where snowplows left piles, now the grey ice is only good for jumping on.

Trees fell and branches are blocking sidewalks all around Jerusalem.

Construction equipment also blocks sidewalks as building goes on and on.

We maneuvered around the mess in the aftermath of the snow.

It was cleaned up today, sharing to show the large size of the area.

Love the trees full of oranges, even more, the smell of those fresh lemons.

To begin the week, the Kosovo Embassy in Jerusalem hosted an event for the International Holocaust Day. The photos of Chargé d’affaires Ines Demiri’s family who were affected by the Holocaust lined the wall.

Government officials from Kosovo were able to participate online. It still impresses me that a country which is over 95% Muslim has a Jewish woman heading its embassy in Jerusalem and so many women in high positions in government.

Another interesting event was held at Beit Hanasi, the Israeli President’s Residence, as Michal Herzog welcomed the spouses and partners of diplomats serving in Israel. Each woman (only women this time, though there are more female ambassadors each year) stood and introduced herself. The daughter of an Israeli Ambassador to Brazil, Michal Herzog was able to respond to a comment in Portuguese, which she learned as a child.

The short video shown on past Israeli Presidents included the famous scene at the United Nations when then Israeli Ambassador Chaim Herzog showed his disgust at the UN resolution equating Zionism to racism by tearing up the piece of paper at the UN podium.

Skipping here the upsetting UN and Amnesty International report, rather,

instead on the day the sun came out and rain was predicted – again –

I was not the only one in the Liberty Bell Park. These women asked an Israeli couple walking by to take their photos with the Liberty Bell.

Watching a group stop in the park for lunch, the cats were ready and waiting to clean up the leftovers.

People were at the Lion’s Fountain and the water was flowing.

The blue sky and white clouds were picture-perfect.

There was enough wind so the windmill moved a little in the breeze.

Yemin Moshe was inviting to stroll through as always.

The light, the weather, the season create unique opportunities for a photo.

There were photo shoots for weddings, bar mitzvahs, and more, but will give them their privacy, as well as the young couples out for the afternoon.

I loved seeing a new sign for the Jerusalem Symphony performances in February. While I appreciated the online recordings this past year, it is good they are tuning up for a new Beethoven series. Even more exciting, Zubin Mehta is to be back to conduct the Israel Philharmonic on February 21st.

Design Week at Hansen House is scheduled for the end of June 2022, organizers have called for creators to submit their designs.

Are we finally coming out of the corona closings and preparing to get back to normal?

I certainly hope so.

Time for photo walks again!

Here’s a short preview, there is so much more to see.

Hope to see you soon in Jerusalem.

Shh, Sharing a Secret Spot in Jerusalem

I lived in NYC when snow came down so fast all the buses stopped running.

The only way to get home was to walk or hitch a ride with a stranger who

got off the Long Island Expressway, and tried to drive on side streets. 

I also lived in Boston where once the snow was so deep that guests

could not walk the short distance to come over for our Purim seudah.

Once in Maryland, Shabbat guests got snowed in until Wednesday.

 Oh, I do not miss shoveling all that white stuff one little bit.

This weekend, once again the Northeastern US got buried in white.

What a contrast,

as the Hebrew month of Adar begins,

and in Jerusalem, Israel, it is such a colorful time of year.

Purim costumes, Purim wigs, costume photo

There are plenty of colorful costumes and things for Purim on display,

but it is the natural colors that are so impressive after so much rain.

photo almond blossoms, Jerusalem photo tour

On Friday, white almond blossoms were in full bloom against the blue sky.

Anemones photo, red flowers, Jerusalem photo walk

Thousands of people drove to the Negev to see anemones in bloom,

Anemones photo, Jerusalem nature walk

but the wild red flowers

Jerusalem photo, Jerusalem nature walk

and beautiful scenes

Nature walk Jerusalem photo

can be found right in Jerusalem, off the Yael Sapir Trail.

Red flower photo, Jerusalem nature photo

Maybe these anemones are not as dense as in the Negev,

People in park photo

and only a few people seem to know about this nature spot,

Valley of the Cross, Jerusalem photo

but it is near the center of Jerusalem.

Anemone photo, Jerusalem nature spot

I love seeing the anemone in full bloom.

Jerusalem marathon, Jerusalem photo

The Jerusalem marathon is coming soon.

runner marathon, Jerusalem marathon

Red flowers are not the only things popping up in the Valley of the Cross.

Runners in red tee-shirts are getting ready for the Jerusalem marathon.

This road is the end stretch of the marathon route.

Valley of Cross photo, Jerusalem nature walk

Wonder if any runners will notice the flowers,

or will it stay our secret spot for another year?