Wednesday, December 27, 2006

More Old City pictures

From the Migdal David museum:

On the right is the Old City, on the left behind the wall is the new.
Trinkets in the market
T-shirts in the Old City market: IDF, Palestine, Che. You can get whatever you want, and it's all made in China...

Some more pics

One photo a day is just not happening here, so I'll post a bunch of photos whenever I get the chance.
Here's my morning traffic jam:
And some photos from the Old City on Christmas Day:
This funky glass sculpture looks like some kind of sea anemonie or something:
Jerusalem bagels with a little bit of zaatar in a piece of paper, yum:
An old man and a boy on an Old City rooftop:


Since we got here the weather has been pleasant: chilly, but sunny. Yesterday winter started and there was a fierce thunderstorm all night. We got 100mm of rain. Today it's forecast to snow here in Jerusalem! brrr.
I would enjoy this weather more if our accommodation weren't so shoddy. The roof leaks and we have rain plinking into a pot under the stairs, and the entire bathroom is a rain forest. It even rains inside the fridge but that has nothing to do with the roof. And the heating doesn't work because the gas providors don't want to come out there in this weather. grrr... but the owner said he will be on the roof all day to fix things. I just hope he doesn't slip or get hit by lightning or something.

Saturday, December 23, 2006


Getting ready for Shabbat dinner with the in-laws, and just had to hop online while I had the chance.
Here are some pictures from the Hadassah campus and also one of Bet Shemesh from the car.
Happy 8th day of Hanukah!! Tonight we light 11 candles: 8 for Hanukah, 1 Shamash, 2 Shabbat.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Camera's back

Yay I have my camera again!
Here are a few photos from last week that I finally got to download. Today I'll take a walk around campus and snap a few shots.
Here are some pics from a Lebanese restaurant in Ein Kerem:

An olive tree:

A nicely striated "upside down" coffee:

Offline with no camera

It's been a week since we landed in Israel, and we haven't had a moment's rest. We've been running around a lot, visiting family and friends and working.
Hubby and Junior both have a bit of a cold that everyone seems to be suffering from here.
I love my work; I just wish I had more time to actually work. The Hadassah campus is beautiful.
Now we are visiting with the in-laws. We don't have Internet at our place up in the hills, so we take advantage of every connection we can plug our cables into (wifi doesn't work well on my laptop for some reason. I'd blame SuSE, but it doesn't work in Windows either.)
A few days ago we forgot our camera here. I have it again now; I am eager to take photos at the uni.
Meanwhile we are running around quite literally from dawn till after midnight every day, so please pardon the light posting.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Jet lag? What jet lag?

Ok, the weekend's over and now it's time to get to work. I arrived at the uni 15 minutes early to give myself enough time to park and find the office. I had no idea the Hadassah campus was so huge! There's actually an internal bus service that goes around the campus. It took me a while to find the place so I was a bit late. No worries. There's construction work everywhere.

The people are very friendly and helpful. Some were relieved that I speak Hebrew, others were a bit disappointed that I was not a "real" Australian.
Today I'm getting settled: connection to the Internet, parking permit, desk. I hope to start real work tomorrow. I don't have much time after all!

The weekend was fun, we drove all around the country visiting family. Hubby and I are over the jet lag, but Junior wakes us up some time between 4 and 5 in the morning, demanding breakfast. It's pitch dark and very cold up in the mountains at 4. I suppose it will take a few more days to shake the jet lag.

So far I'm enjoying every minute here.

The last time I was visiting the homeland, 3 years ago, everyone we met told us how they would love to go to Australia (or anywhere else) and how lucky we were. Today, all of my colleagues here at uni told me that Israel is the best place to live and asked what we're doing in Australia. "What's the difference? Over there you have a bigger car, a bigger house, and people don't shove in the queue for the bus. That's it!" Well, it's a bit more complicated than that I suppose.

I promise pictures soon.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Greetings from Kazakhst... uhh, Israel

Shalom from the holy land.
Sorry for not posting earlier, but our accommodation doesn't have internet, so we have to use whatever we can get when we visit people. And since wifi doesn't really work well with my Linux, this isn't always easy.

Anyway, the flight went as well as 30 hours in a tin can could possible be. We are slowly getting over the jet lag.

I'm very happy to be here and I'm really enjoying it... My feelings for this country are always so strong, whether positive or negative, I can't be ambivalent. I love the landscape. I love the people (most of the time). I love the food. I love that I can call my high school friends after not seeing them for 3 years, and we can chat as if I had never left the country, and I know that they are closer friends than any I will ever have in Australia.
I love that my son gets to play with his cousins and everyone understands him when he speaks Hebrew.

The 'tzimmer' we are living in (sort of like a self-contained apartment) is in a small village. It's cute, but has its "charms": the window that doesn't close properly, the bathroom light that switches off when you take a shower, the fridge that freezes our food. But it's up in the mountains, surrounded by pine forests, with crisp clean air. Very relaxing, but it's hard to get used to living offline!

I have no idea how many photos I owe youse, so here are a few:

From the Sydney airport shops:

Our first plane:
and a Tel Aviv cat:

And a note to my internet friends who I promised to call: I promise to call this weekend!

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

All packed up and ready to go

well, almost.
Sorry for not posting any pictures the last couple of days; we already packed the camera's USB cable. Maybe I'll be able to post from the airport, or maybe even from the ElAl plane - if they have internet connection then it will be free of charge! cool.
We have so much stuff to schlep, it's not even funny.
In the last couple of days I've been running around in Headless Chicken Mode, but everything seems to be under some sort of control.
I called to confirm our flights. After listening to about 20 minutes of a recorded message telling me there's no need to confirm, I finally got a human to talk to. Of course, our vegetarian meals were not ordered, but Junior got a vegan meal for some reason. Why not? I only asked the travel agent about, oh, 5 times about it.
Anyway, this afternoon we're off to the airport and 24 hours after stepping on the plane, barring any unforseen circumstances, we will be landing in Israel.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Funky tree

Stress Control

Stress levels are high. At work I've been working so hard that at 4:00 I suddenly realise that I haven't left my seat all day. I was going to work today, but decided, after getting physically exhausted, to adopt an attitude of "bugger it all". I did enough, and I will work until the plane takes off. Today I can rest.

My little baby grapes are all grown up! Still not ready to eat. Oh well, the birds will have a feast.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Tuesday, December 05, 2006


But at least I have time for a quick photo.
Some flowers from the supermarketWine and cheese?
It should have been labled "Parra", oh well. Pretty good wine though.
By the way, if you click on the photos you can see a slightly larger version.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Catching up

Sorry for not posting any photos the last couple of days. It turns out the problem I've been having with Blogger is a known issue, and clearing the cache solved it. Now I can finally post pictures (having seated Junior in front of the TV so that I have some time to myself).

I went out partying the last couple of nights right after work, which is highly unusual for me. I turn into a pumpkin long before midnight, now that I have my own little alarm clock that wakes me up at 6 every morning, demanding a cup of milk.

I took pictures though.
Here's a little tube of Vegemite, made especially for travelling Aussies. It should last us the trip to Israel.

And here's a small guitar I got at KMart. I couldn't help it... I was shopping for undies (20% off!) and saw this in the bargain bin. It was marked down by about 60% because it had been returned without the box. How could I resist? Junior loves it.
It's been raining the last couple of days.

I don't think the grapes will be ready for harvest by the time we leave.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

grrrr Blogger!!!

Blogger is being annoying again. I can post text but I can't add photos, links etc. I promise to post pictures from the last couple of days as soon as the Blogger team fix things.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Monday, November 27, 2006

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Thursday, November 23, 2006


State of denial

So, you are asking yourself, why so little blogging lately?

Well, several reasons. One is that I am in some sort of denial about the impending trip to Israel. It's not that I'm totally in denial, actually I'm quite looking forward to it. It's just the time-frame that I'm not grasping very well. First it was "in a few months", then "another 6 weeks or so", and yesterday it was "about a month" until I checked my diary and saw that it's in fact less than 3 weeks. That was a shocker.

The other reason is that I'm frantically trying to get a whole bunch of things done before we go. I have a paper to write, quite a lot of research work to do and a huge report to write. And when I finally get my laptop I will have to install everything and make sure all is working. And I want to make sure I have everything working and ready to go so that I can hit the ground running when I start to work at the uni in Israel. Hubby is also scrambling to get a lot done, so that means less time for both of us for doing home-related work.

Also, since we switched to daylight savings a couple of weeks ago, Junior has been jet lagged for that one hour. This means he only goes to sleep around 9:00 instead of 8:00 like he used to. This leaves me very little time in the evening to do any blogging before I collapse in an exhausted heap on the couch at the end of the day.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Shower pics

If that doesn't get some traffic to the site, then I don't know what will.

Sunday, November 19, 2006


Sculpture by the Sea

Plenty of uncovered meat at the beach in Tamarama. This sculpture is called Unveiled.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Thursday, November 16, 2006


gumbootsToday was cold and wintery. It should be summer! Where's that global warming everyone keeps promising?

Wednesday, November 15, 2006


Let's see how this Blogger beta works. In the meantime, here is a fan.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Monday, November 13, 2006

Still on a U2 high

I'm still buzzing from the U2 concert.
It was awesome!! I have waited more than half my life to see them live and now I finally got the chance, and it was everything I hoped it would be.
The tickets said that no photographic equipment would be allowed, and like an idiot, I left my camera in the car. Of course nobody checked. I took some photos and videos on my mobile phone until the battery died.
We were way up in the nosebleed section, which we managed to climb without supplemental oxygen. It turned out that my friend is afraid of heights, and she nearly got a heart attack just getting to our seats. But we got there in the end. Sitting comfortably and watching all the people in the pit crowding, I thought to myself: I'm glad I'm not down there in the crowd since morning!
Then the show started.
All I could think was: OMG I want to be down there by the stage!!
But I enjoyed the show from the wuthering heights instead.
The band were great. The show was amazing. The crowd went nuts and sang along to every word. I was so excited, I cried during "Where the streets have no name", which was very emotional not just for me. At the end of the song Bono said, "Wow. What was that?! Whatever it was, I want more!". The energy in the stadium was palpable.
The show ended with Bono flying a kite tied to some balloons over the audience. For some reason he dedicated the song (Kite) to Cate Blanchett.
The show was over way too soon, I couldn't believe when I looked at my watch and saw that it had been about 2.5 hours...
I used to be totally nuts about U2. Now I am a bit older, maybe wiser, definitely more cynical. And still, at the show I felt like I was 16 again.

The Dalek Tree

Whenever I pass this tree I am reminded of a Dalek.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

For now, photos

The U2 concert was amazing.
Unfortunately I don't have any time to write about it now.
In the meantime, here are today's and yesterday's photos. Both from the car.
A teacup and the Anzac Bridge.