The time has come to return to Israel.

They're talking to you, Israelis. The Israeli government has been enticing Israeli ex-pats back for a  while now. But it seems they've added emotionally heart-tugging videos to their Jewish guilt arsenal. The Returning Home Project - not just for born-diaspora Jews anymore. The campaign seems aimed at getting friends and family still in Israel to... Continue Reading →

Conflict management.

It's probably only appropriate that at the graduation ceremony for Bar Ilan University's Conflict Management and Negotiation program, I witnessed my first Israeli-Arab walkout. I studied in the program the same years as a secularish Arab girl from around Uhm Al Fahm. She's probably around my age, with an assertive nature and a big, warn... Continue Reading →

Yom Haatzmaut this year.

My flight is on erev Yom Haatmzaut - the eve of Independence Day here in Israel. That is THE day of the year: everyone takes off work, everyone goes to parks, everyone barbecues as much meat as they can, and everyone coughs a lot and experiences stinging eyeballs as the other entire country is crammed... Continue Reading →

The baby leaves of Israel.

Today's Hebrew lesson: עלי בייבי Not a hard term to learn in Hebrew. It means 'baby leaves' - you know, those tiny bits of greenery you put in salad that cost more than the other vegetables combined? It's also a term I made up for a certain type of middle-aged Israeli woman - you know... Continue Reading →

The manliest men are in Israel.

Home, sweet Israel. Koala and I arrived back from my work trip to the States in two pieces. Soon to be five years here and, oh, how the tables have turned. Anyway, nothing says 'welcome home to Israel, immigrant!' like an Israeli marketing campaign. Bezeq Parrot, eat your heart out: Because the manliest men carry... Continue Reading →

An Israeli parenting first.

While I was pregnant, I found that I wasn't getting too many invasive comments, suggestions and guesses from middle-aged to older Israeli women (as I had dreadfully expected). When I mentioned this to some, they said not to worry; the comments would come for sure once I had a baby to show for it.  "They'll... Continue Reading →

Everybody loves a pregnant lady.

Something I've discovered - maybe now that I'm so obviously pregnant or that I've actually realized I'm so obviously pregnant (it took a while) - is that in Israel, or maybe just Jerusalem, everybody loves a pregnant lady.  The old guy scooping me ice cream? Big smiles and bigger scoops. "Have some more, it's good... Continue Reading →

Facing the streets.

I like this. Especially since reading the Israeli news lately has been painful (then again, when is it not?). Look at Barkat being all cultural and whatnot: Jerusalem streets to put a face to name Capital's municipality to replace all street signs named after famous people with new signs featuring personality's image, story You're driving... Continue Reading →

The New York questions.

When Israeliborns ask where I'm from 'b'makor' there are usually a few follow up questions that I get after I answer I'm from New York. Por example: Ahhh, so you lived/you have been to Brooklyn?! Are there a lot of Arabs there? Have you been to Harlem? Is it really scary? I wonder if you... Continue Reading →

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