Spring has turned the desert green

20160401_113645Friday mornings are kind of a ritual between Ahmad and I. We normally start with breakfast at Usra, our favourite little hummus place, before heading out for whatever it is we have planned. The last few weeks, however, we have not been able to leave the city for various reasons from work to weather and illness. Recently, we’ve changed it up a little bit with the lovely (and delicious) Hatouteh.

 

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Ayyam-i-Ha in Amman

Jordan is home to a small Baha’i community of approximately 1,000 people. After meeting a lovely Baha’i man in London at the House of Commons, I have learned a little more about the faith and he and his friends have always been exceptionally kind, welcoming, and interesting. It was he who introduced me to his niece here in Amman, a member of the Baha’i community and wonderfully well-traveled woman.

On Saturday, she invited me to join her and her family and neighbours for the Festival of Ayyam-i-Ha.  Continue reading

Off the beaten track: Dead Sea

I love Jordan. Every day I have a moment where I feel this absolute peace and think “I am in the right place”. Every single day since I moved here, 5 months ago.

That being said, one of the most frustrating things about Jordan is the fact that almost everything is privatized. You want to go to the Dead Sea for a day? The first thing people think of is “which hotel will I go to for day access?” Call me crazy, but I find paying a minimum of $50 for day access to a beach absurd. I also don’t want to spend a day floating in the Dead Sea and looking at a half dozen hotels and a lot of people. Continue reading

The Israeli life

I’m always astounded by how eventful my daily life here is. Perhaps I was exceptionally lazy in Montreal, or perhaps all the homework from class ensured that I didn’t have much spare time. Or most likely, it was the limiting (and long) winters. In any case, I think since my arrival I haven’t had one boring, uneventful week here… and this week certainly was no exception.

On Tuesday night I met with a lovely friend for dinner and a walk along the previously mentioned housing protest on Rothschild Boulevard. I was amazed at how much it had expanded since the last time I went. It had almost doubled. There were various locations with artists performing live music and giant screens had been rigged and people were watching television and documentaries together under the trees. It sounds lovely and romantic, but in reality, it’s not all fun and games in Tel Aviv’s absurd heat and humidity. Continue reading

Isifiya and some Tel Aviv

My posts now have a habit of being long overdue. It’s because, surprisingly enough, I’m busy all the time. In my determination to make friends and see Israel I forget that I also need time for myself, of which I now have very little. In fact, though I don’t miss the intense stress of university, I do miss having so much me-time.

Before I get into the momentous events of the last week, I must being by stating the all-important news that today, for the first time ever (and after many years of trying), I succeeded in making my first intact omelette. Not numerous tasty, shapeless chunks of egg on my plate, but a full, round, delicious and very very pretty omelette. I am proud. Continue reading

The Golan Heights and Nablus and some more

An update is long overdue. I always underestimate how much time it takes to write these posts. I absolutely had to update it today or else the next update would have much too much in it. This is a long post, I’m forewarning you.

Last weekend I spent Saturday driving through the north-east of Israel with a lovely Indian guy that my wonderful (now ex) roommate introduced me to. Together, we went up to the Sea of Galilee (which, for those of you who don’t know, is the body of water Jesus walked on). We didn’t do as much Jesus-stuff as I would have liked (eg. we didn’t visit the Church of the Primacy or the sight of the Sermon on the Mount), but we did visit Capernaum and the Church of the Loaves and Fishes. I wish we had found a place to sit by the Sea of Galilee, or that I had brought a book just to sit in Capernaum and read. There was something peaceful about being right by the lake in Capernaum. And of course, me being me, I imagined what it would have been like in Jesus’ time and the like. What was also interesting about the ruins at Capernaum was how small it was! Continue reading