It is impossible to say the name of the city “Tel Aviv” without adding exclamation points to it. My friend and roommate Emily says her dad says, “Tel Aviv? That’s the closest city to Israel!” And it’s true. It’s another world there, a little bit. There are restaurants and bars and cafes everywhere, and people in short shorts and bikini tops headed to the beach and lots of nightlife. It’s a fun fun place to be and it’s where I met up with my friends after I got off the plane from Switzerland for four days and five nights of sun and exploring.
Wednesday and Thursday were Memorial Day and Independence Day so on Wednesday night, we picnicked in the famous Rabin Square and watched a huge performance and fireworks show. It was packed and although we couldn’t fully understand what was going on in the show, we liked watching all the young people performing.
On Thursday, we wandered and wandered and wandered some more, eating a nice lunch at a cafe and spending some time lying on the rocks on the shore by a park where families were barbecuing and flying kites and the like, just like Fourth of July in the States. We stopped for a moment outside Independence Hall to take pictures.
On Friday, we went to an art festival near the shuk in Tel Aviv after breakfast right next to it at another cafe. Then that night, we rang in Shabbat with a picnic on the beach to watch the sun set over the Mediterranean.
Saturday was a delightful Shabbat. We kept asking ourselves, “Wait, we are in Israel, right?” because almost everything was open! We walked way up to the northern tip of the city where there is a huge park and a marina-type area. I took a nap under a big shady tree and then we found another art festival! Another night out to eat completed the day…here’s me in the park.
So the themes of the weekend were good food, good friends and lots of sunshine and walking. It wasn’t a go crazy weekend in Tel Aviv. We didn’t stay up all night, we didn’t drink ourselves into a stupor, we didn’t see a million art galleries or museums. We just wandered, enjoying the energy and life of the city, which really is unique. And it was totally great.
On Sunday, it was back to Haifa for the first time in 9 days for me and a general “gearing up” for the last month of the program. As you can see, I’m about two weeks behind on blogging, but hopefully this week I’ll get all caught up. As always, thanks for reading!