Israeliness,Life

Snow-tubing

We were all ready for snow in Jerusalem a couple of weeks back, but there was none in the end. Now snow is back in the weather for Friday, and I’ve already seen a few flurries today. But, after a …

Life

Castration Clinic

At first glance, it looks like any other veterinarian’s office. Pictures of dogs and cats on the walls, efficient and busy animal doctors flitting around in blue cotton smocks. But the pets coming this morning to the Jerusalem Society for …

Life

20,000 Birthrighters in Israel last summer – but why?

I’m always heartened to read about the ever-growing numbers of young people the Taglit-birthright program has brought to Israel. In the latest report, appearing today on Ynet, last summer nearly 20,000 young adults (including 10,000 from 712 colleges across North …

Life

Toilets here and there

Abby Leichman has written one of the most off-beat and yet voyeuristically engaging Top Ten Lists I’ve read in a while on Israel21c. It’s a compilation of the best public toilets in Jerusalem. Now, while such a grouping is necessarily …

Entertainment,Life

Celebrity at the wedding

The young man in the light purple shirt and the small knitted kippa looked awfully familiar. He was sitting in the row in front of us at the chuppa of the daughter of close friends. My wife Jody went up …

Education,Israeliness,Life

The “mechinistim”

School officially started a week ago, and along with it the beginning of the “mechina” year. As our daughter is one of the new mechinistim, I thought this might be a good time to talk about what is a mechina, …

Life

Darkness at the edge of town

As the darkness settled over us, I felt an unanticipated sense of panic. I had been expecting to be unsettled, startled, certainly disoriented; I didn’t realize it would bring up so many deep and hidden emotions. To set the stage: …

Life

Unaccompanied minor

I took my 13-year-old son to the airport last night. He was flying as an “unaccompanied minor” to Los Angeles to meet up with his grandparents who have promised him two weeks of unmitigated American fun (roller coasters, beaches and …

Life

My aunt the spy

We met a real honest-to-goodness spy this past Shabbat. “Florence” (not her real name) was in town for the bar mitzvah of her nephew. We were all making small talk – the unseasonably hot weather, how well the bar mitzvah …