Tuesday, January 5, 2010

some pictures from Israel and pictures not taken

Even though there are over 100 pictures, I wish, as usual, that I'd taken more. Why don't I have a picture of Chava and Yehuda's house on the kibbutz? Or Dinah's house in Beer Sheva? We spent about 90% of our time in those two places but, of course, those are not pictures we took. Probably should have taken a picture of the neon green car we had, too, but it didn't occur to me.

This is a picture of the taxi ride from Amman to the border crossing at Beit Shean in Israel. The landscape seems like a mirror image of Israel: travel from the elevated city down to the valley and across the Jordan river.

We spent the first few days on Gvulot and in Beer Sheva. I finished grading papers, Hanuka ended. There were some sandstorms and cloudy days at first, and then only sunshine. We didn't even have rain in the south (while it was pouring up in Tel Aviv). After the folks from the US joined us Sunday night, we had more days of relaxing. We went swimming on Gvulot and out to eat in Beer Sheva. Some shopping for nice clothes. My friend Marva's daughter got married on Thursday in Ashdod so we saw many people we hadn't seen in years.

On Friday, the Gvulot Pelegs arranged a desert outing to Avdat. We were joined by cousins from the north. This is in the tourist center before we saw a short movie. We looked around for Matan and realized I'd locked him in the back seat of the car (parents aren't supposed to forget kids in cars, and this is a particularly big kid to have forgotten!).

Some pictures (Chava and Kris):

Matan, Hovav, Ronit and Karni are the big people, the two kids are Ronit and Hovav's Omar and Hila on Hovav's shoulders.

We were probably about 25 people with Chava and Yehuda, the MN Pelegs, Karni and Marcelo and their 3 kids (Lior, Noga and Lital), Ronit and Hovav and their 2 kids (Omer and Hila), Gil and Yoav, Doron, and the cousins from up north (another 5 people).

After Avdat, we went to a vineyard and had a tour and wine tasting there.

Lots of discussions about agriculture and politics. Land use in Israel is complicated since private farms, at least remote ones, are not usually authorized by the government. I guess the reasons are both historical (security) and economic (water). Then we went to Park Golda for a huge picnic.

We had a huge Friday night dinner at Chava and Yehuda's with lots of talking well into the night. Saturday morning was easy going between the different houses and lunch was catered at the moadon (meeting room) with lots of slides of the trip that Yehuda had taken all of his kids to Romania last spring.

We heard stories of that trip and more stories about the family. It was great to see with all of the people present so there was a lot of talking! Naps and more visiting finished out that Shabbat.

It's kind of hard to remember what we did day-to-day! We went out walking in the desert, we hung out at cousins and on kibbutz, we visited friends who lived relatively close to Beer Sheva (Michal and Lilac).
Went out to eat in Beer Sheva -- this was at Arabica:

Saw a documentary film on Gvulot that featured one of the people I knew when I lived on Gvulot. Discussion afterwards was particularly interesting about people growing up on kibbutz and leaving for cities, and other countries.

We did go up to Jerusalem on New Year's Eve and saw Jon and his sisters who were touring Israel. We stayed at Noa and Jackie's house and went to Ein Kerem for breakfast, as we have done for 3 of the past 4 years (!), but the resturant that we wanted to show the kids was closed for repairs. So we had brunch at a different place. Good thing there was no hurry since they took 2 hours to serve us!

We went to the ceramic place and had fun before going back to kibbutz. Friday night was Kibbutz Nir Yitzhak's 60th birthday party and the bnei kibbutz (kibbutz kids) came in from all over Israel, so we got to see most of the people we know! Shaked stayed on to go to out with her cousin, Shir.

Saturday was one last trip to Beer Sheva. Aliza and Elisha came down for lunch at Dinah's. Some last minute SuperPharm purchases before going back to the kibbutz and one last big family dinner. It's hard to write about it -- not quite ready for it all to be over for this time.

Shaked, Noga and Omer... Jan 2010.


  1. Thanks for taking the time to tell us of your days and the wonderful visiting you did. May the memories bless and keep you til next time.

  2. Edna and Chad20 May, 2010 00:47

    Hi Kris, sorry I haven't kept up with your travels, but I enjoyed these latest photos in Israel.
    Have a good trip to Bangledesh with Matan and Shaked and then back to Chicago.
    We're fine here; enjoying our 18 mo. old granddaughter, Anora, as we babysit every afternoon.
    Peace and prayers,