Random thoughts...

First, check out the new Haveil Havelim: http://atimeofthesigns.blogspot.com/2009/06/haveil-havalim-224-fourth-of-july.html

I'll be hosting the Jewish blog carnival next week, so submit your posts! If you aren't sure how to use the submission form, you can also post links in response to this message, and I'll try to include them.

Second, happy July 4th! This is my second American Independence Day in Israel, and I think we've got a tradition going. While I normally try to cook like an Israeli (big surprise), on July 4th I go all out and try to cook American. Heinz barbecue sauce on chicken, pasta salad, baked beans, corn, apple pie, and-- of course-- "lettuce salad" (as Israelis call it). On Friday night I had Israeli family as guests, and it was great to see them picking cucumbers and tomatoes out of my salad to try to make it a bit more Israeli. :)

And just in case you thought we don't have the same kind of (redneck) patriotism here that you have in the US, here's an Israeli flag flying from the back of a pickup truck:

Finally, here are answers to the "Hebrish" quiz-- congrats to Alone in the Holy Land for getting almost every question right!

1. Cat scratcher (From one of those cardboard scratching boxes. Don't ask me why this one was in English.)
2. Instillator (This is a word that sounds like English but probably comes to Hebrew from another language. It means "plumber." We have about 10 "instillator" magnets stuck on our metallic door... maybe I'll post a picture some time!)
3. Salon Abraham (from a beauty salon nearby)
4. Extra large (I forget the context, but it wasn't a fast food meal.)
5. Double lotto
6. American Pancake
7. The sexiest ("Hachi sexiot"-- "sexy" is conjugated for plural female. This is from the cover of a women's magazine featuring Bar Rafeili.)
8. HaTalkbackistim (In other words, "the talkbacks." This is probably referring to people on Internet sites "talking back" about participants in the reality show "The Amazing Race." I love the fact that this very English idiom is conjugated with Hebrew grammar. :)
9. Hava International (Probably a play on "Dana International," Israel's most famous transvestite superstar, who is not to be confused with "Roni Superstar.")
10. Big Ben (Referring to Ben Affleck!)
11.Astrologit (Astrological)
12. Horoscope
13. 10 classikot (10 classics-- referring to books.)

Hope you enjoyed!


  1. Thanks for the link! Have a good time hosting next week - I had a much better time doing it than I expected!

  2. Well, thank you for the credit!
    What is this carnival thing?
    My best,

  3. Haveil Havelim is a "Blog Carnival," which means that a bunch of Jewish bloggers submit posts and then the hosting blogger each week selects posts (usually includes almost all of them, I think) to include in that Sunday's carnival. I'm excited to host! If you follow the link, you'll see this week's carnival. I believe there's info on how to submit at the top of the post!

  4. Hey, just a correction. 2 is not instillator, it is installator with both "a"s pronounced as "ah". Via Russian I suspect.

  5. true-- thanks, Victor! I guess I was trying to make it more English-sounding than it is, but yes, it's pronounced "instalator."

  6. I began a blog that I never had the energy to keep up - I so admire you for managing this and love your postings - but thought you'd relate to the introduction I wrote to my blog.

    Feel free to publish this or simply read it and nod and smile as you see yourself sharing these sentiments.


    I was just 14 when I first visited Israel and I never suspected that I was about to fall hopelessly and helplessly in love with a country...a nation...a new way of being. Photographs from that life-changing trip show me in tears in the Ben Gurion departure lounge and this became a pattern that continued with every annual visit that followed.

    I could never quite understand my depth of emotion for this feisty little country. I was born and bred in South Africa and grew up surrounded by loving family, friends and all the luxuries typically enjoyed by a privileged White child. Why then did I feel so foreign as I drove the familiar streets and interacted with people I'd known for a lifetime and only felt I truly belonged when I stepped back onto Israeli soil?

    My love for Israel defined me. I listened only to Israeli music. I lingered over books on Israel in every bookstore I entered and watched movies that were based in the Middle East with an overwhelming longing to transport myself to the world shown on screen. In 1991 I escaped the Gulf War just as the first scuds hit Tel Aviv and went to London where I found myself drawn to the local ELAL offices in the hope of savoring a taste of the country I loved best.

    I once explained my attachment to Israel by saying that I went about my daily routine with a constant awareness of missing a piece of my heart and it was only when I arrived back here that I felt that illusive puzzle piece slip seamlessly into place.

    Israel soothed my soul in way that nothing else could. It was for this reason that in 2005 I decided that I could no longer spend the rest of my days wishing I was someplace else and put plans in motion to relocate my family to the country of my heart.

    We arrived at the Mirkaz Klitah absorption centre in Raanana on the 26th June 2006....and Israel went to war with Lebanon just 2 weeks later. The next 18 months saw me move home 3 times ... tackle the challenges of settling my children into an entirely new school and social environment ... reestablish my cookery school and make new friends ...and face a sudden divorce that saw me unexpectedly navigating my way through single parenting.

    It also brought me sheer joy as I realised that this was not merely an infatuation and I truly had found the love of my life. I continue to thrill at the sight of the distinctive blue and white flags that flap in the breeze and I am always the last person on the street to remove my flag from the gate-post after the Yom Hautzmaut Independence Day celebrations are over. My eyes still fill with tears whenever I hear the Hatikva national anthem. And I constantly irritate my children by changing radio stations if the station I am tuned to dares to play anything but Israeli music.

    2008 will be a momentous year as Israel celebrates 60 years of independence and I celebrate my 40th and a new found independence of my own. Being here for this momentous birthday is the greatest gift I could ever wish for and I am grateful each and every day to have been granted the opportunity to realise this dream.

    Roll on another year of sunshine!


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