Summer Sweetness

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20180517_153514Here is a nice little story that may restore your faith in humankind, just in time for Shavuot.

As some of my followers may know, I’ve recently ordered a Stephen King book from Book Depository. The item was dispatched within three business days, as they promised. They said it would take within 10 business days to make it to its destination, i.e. me.

I waited over two weeks before going to the post office to see what the hell was up. They had no idea.

The following day, I received a message via Facebook from a stranger who said he is trying to track down a person bearing my name and maiden name who lives in Jerusalem because he received a package that was mistakenly delivered to him.

So not only is he not my Facebook friend, he is a complete stranger. And he didn’t simply return the package to the post office as most people do, he actually went out of his way to track me down and deliver the package to its rightful addressee.

This is a big deal. Especially for me because this is a Stephen King book we are talking about here. It is tantamount to sacred scripture. Any other person would have just tossed it, and that would be sacrilege!

So it turned out that he works in the center of town, where I also work. He just dropped by my office to give me my package. The million thank-yous I told him didn’t seem to be doing justice to just how grateful I was. Really, how awesome is that?

To top it off, today is hot as hell. FINALLY! I can do away with the hoodies and the layers and the winter gear, and replace it with kickass tank tops and summer dresses. Not to mention, my baby will stop fussing around when I dress her because I probably just won’t! There is some baby chub that requires some serious smushing. A little pair of shorts or a cute little onesie and finito.

This is the positivity that only sunshine can bring. Say what you want about Israeli heat, blue skies breeds smiles, there is no denying that.

Peace, love and sunscreen

 

 

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Spring, Summer, Autumn, Corpse

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I’ve been a winter hater, like, forever. But never like this. This winter is getting on my last nerve and if I don’t get sunshine any time soon, I’m gonna fucking scream.

This past weekend, I was in Be’er Sheva.

And it simply. did not. stop. raining.

You know these people who love rain because it’s awesome to be indoors, in bed, under a big fat winter blanket, with a blasting heater, drinking tea or some shit. The problem with this so-called pleasure that these amoeba-brained winter-lovers seem to forget is that they are not bears and they don’t hibernate. They will not spend their entire winter in bed, under big fat winter blankets being all warm and cozy. Eventually, they will have to get their ass up, get out of their warm winter covers and into heavy winter gear – coat, tuque, gloves, scarf, boots, the works – and out into the wet, coldass, winter wind and frost and suffer every miserable minute of this crappy weather. Your warm cozy ass is nothing more than an illusion. Get your ass out there and face the everyday reality of the chicken leg you keep in your freezer.

After going through a whole weekend of nothing but rain, I got back home, doubled and tripled my layers, blasted every heater known to man and resumed detachment from this frosty reality under my enormous winter blanket.

This morning, when I woke up, I wanted to murder my blanket because it only served to remind me that I am indeed not a bear.

When is it gonna be summer already??? I want the sweltering scorching heat. I want to dress my daughter in shorts and a tank top. Fuck all these layers already! I wanna sleep in my underwear and wake up in a pool of my own sweat. Fuck these ice-cold fingers! I’ve so had it!!!

I honestly do not understand you people who love winter. You might as well love swimming in a pool of diarrhea. It’s all the same to me. The love of winter simply sabotages my common sense.

Peace, love, cold and stiff.

Sunshine Fuels Production

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I feel ultra productive right now. I’m pretty sure it’s got something to do with the weather. Today is nice, warm and sunshiny. For the first time in a long time I left home without my raincoat. Word has it that it will only be getting warmer this week and it makes me giddy with productive inspiration. Israeli skies are definitely the skies to be under this February!

So this morning, I got up at the bright and early hour of 9:00 (seeing as I wake up every day at 10:30, yes, it is early for me). I had my mandatory morning tea and piece of cake, got dressed, grabbed my dog, and went for a 40-minute power-walk. It made me feel so good that I decided to change my pre-made schedule for this upcoming week and cleared my mornings for more power-walks. Then I had a rice-cake with cheese and yellow cheese for brunch before leaving for work.

I just had a fresh veggies snack and I officially feel too healthy. I need sugar. So keeping with my productive streak, I printed three recipes to try out this week – blueberry crumble, blueberry cookies and chocolate chip cookies.

I gotta go grocery shopping.

I wanna play guitar.

Oh, sun is the best thing for making stencils!

I also need to make a zine.

Today is V-Day and Metal Night. Definitely celebrating both.

I wish I had more hands.

When such things pile up, instead of doing stuff, I just sit around trying to figure out what to do first, and end up doing nothing.

Is there such a thing as being too productive?

Peace, love and SWEET POTATO PIE!!

SPP

Heart-Shaped Star

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My birthday is coming up on Tet-Vav Tishrei which falls on September 27 this year. And yes, it is Tet-Vav and not Yud-Daled as some people keep telling me. I was born at night, after the stars came out, so that makes it the next day, that is Tet-Vav. So there!

As usual, the full moon is the most important thing for me on my Jewish birthday. Since the time I started observing the cycles of the moon in relation to my cycles and my body, it became imperative for me to see the full moon of Tishrei every year. One year, there was a sandstorm on that day which completely blotted out the moon, and I was utterly depressed and riding an enormous tidal wave of rage. I wrote an angry entry in my diary and nearly tore through the page with my pen.

Last week, we once again had a crazy sandstorm that was so bad it made it hard to breathe. Pregnant women, children and the elderly were advised to stay indoors, with the windows closed, and the AC working overtime. Since no rain would fall for another couple of months, I feared that the sand would persist all through the month and I will once again be faced with a faded smudge of white on a diarrhea-tinted night-sky on my birthday, and my levels of pissed-off-ness would go right off the charts.

But now that the dust had indeed settled, here’s another thing that might ruin the moon visibility on my birthday: the full lunar eclipse which is set to take place in the early morning hours of the 28th. That’s cutting it really fucking close, and I hope to the Goddess and the moon angel that I will be able to see the full pearly moon before it turns to red (as they say it does during a lunar eclipse).

Also, I wonder what it means, if it means anything, in terms of astrology. I never really put my faith (or fate for that matter) in horoscopes. But I do believe that the moon and the stars and the planets in our galaxy affect events on our planet in some way. I think horoscopes are a poor indication of this phenomenon, but it does happen somehow. So I wonder what the lunar eclipse will bring forth.

I also recently found out that there is in fact a connection between the Zodiac system and Judaism. I don’t know why I never realized this before. I mean, if anything, it is so obvious that Libra would fall on the Jewish new year. This is a time of judgement and of justice. The Goddess measures our good and evil deeds on a scale, just like the Libra, and we atone for our sins on the Day of Atonement in order to tip the scales in our favor. I’m not sure what the other Zodiac signs mean in relation to the other Jewish months, but this Libra timing is too perfect to be a coincidence.

The moon has been dark earlier this week. I think it will start peeking sometime tonight as a thin crescent that I like to call a fingernail clipping. Hello moon! Welcome back!

Peace, love and still a proud Libra!

Snow Blows

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Diamond in the SnowAnother weather rant. But seeing as I survived this past weekend, I pretty damn well earned it.

Israel is not the place I expected to be snowed in. And although the temperatures were not entirely reminiscent of my years in Montreal, where they reached the lowest of the low, -20, -30, even -40, they were cold enough to make me utterly miserable.

The snow started falling on Thursday morning. I received an SMS from my boss informing me that the office will be closed and to enjoy the long weekend. From my perspective, the long weekend was already ruined due to the snow. My boyfriend came back from work early even after being stuck in traffic for three hours. He was also one of the lucky ones as many people were stranded mostly at the entrance to Jerusalem. Some even abandoned their vehicles and either walked or hitched a ride to a temporary shelter and out of the cold.

We had warm soup, doubled our pajama layers and blasted both the wall heater and the one with the spiral beams. My boyfriend went back to sleep for a ridiculous four hours while I read a book. At around 17:00, I got dressed (this took me about 20 minutes considering the extra layers) and took Diamond out for her evening walk.

Diamond happily trotted by my side, every once in a while slipping into a pile of snow. As I zigzagged my way across the unplowed sidewalk, and seeing Diamond getting covered in snow which kept on falling endlessly, I looked up at the sky through the sliver between the hem of my tuque and the thick wool scarf which covered half of my face. I flashed back to the time in Montreal when I would take out my dog, Buxy, during the coldest nights of the year. He hated the snow just as much as I did since his feet were webbed and the snow would accumulate between his toes and turn to ice. He would then proceed to limp the rest of the way back home. That was until we bought him socks, which he also hated.

I remember the Montreal nights being bright since the snow and the clouds reflected back all the street lights and lit up the night as if it was day. One of the things I love about Israel is that most of the year, there are no clouds and there is no snow. None of the lights are reflected and the nights are as dark as it is within the confines of my inner child’s shelter room. The moon and the stars are clearly visible on the background of a pitch black sky. There was no such thing in Canada.

So flashing back to my years in Montreal, while I was still walking the streets of Jerusalem, was surreal. It wasn’t good and it wasn’t bad. It was just surreal.

When we got home, my boyfriend was just beginning to wake up. I took a steaming hot shower and got back into my double layered PJs, carrying my hotwater bottle around like a teddy bear. Outside my living room window, the snowflakes fell in clumps and completely blurred out the wadi and the parallel street overlooking our backyard. The wind made the night even more dreadful. The electric company employees and technicians were all on overdrive as thousands of citizens were left in the dark, as the cool air seeped into the houses through the poorly insulated walls.

We were of the lucky few who had a short power failure in the early evening hours on Friday, which lasted no more than 10 minutes. But others weren’t so lucky. Some had power failures that lasted up to 24 hours, sometimes longer. It was reported that 30,000 retirement homes were left with no electricity. One can only hope they had gas heaters or at least a few generators to keep the elderly and the bedridden from freezing to death.

We stayed indoors the entire weekend. Going out anywhere was impossible. No plowers passed on our small street. We couldn’t even go grocery shopping and we still have no food at home (luckily, my boyfriend’s parents live right upstairs from us and they had plenty of food). We were forced to keep walking Diamond in piles of snow, wearing about four to five layers of clothes, two layers of socks covered in plastic bags to keep our feet dry in case water seeps into our boots, and it did.

Diamond’s Husky side became more evident as the snow levels grew. She kept begging us to take her out again and again, to play in the snow in the backyard. I was worried to leave her outside on her own. Husky or not, she’s still Israeli and not used to such weather.

Now it’s Sunday. The snow started melting a little last night but most businesses and government offices are still closed. There is no public transportation and taxis are the only ones profiting from that. By some miracle, I managed to make it to work today. I was hoping to finally get one of Hasalatia’s awesome soups, which have eluded me since last week due to bad timing. But of course, they too were closed. I have yet to figure out how to make it back home and how to take out Diamond for a walk through the streets, which have now become all icy and slippery.

Now all my Canadian and North US friends will probably tell me to suck it up – that at least I don’t have to suffer through five months of that white shit, that the temperatures never get lower than -5, that the worst that could ever happen in Israel right now is buckets of rain. Well, no. I won’t suck it up. Israel is a country which is built and organized according to hot weather. There is no insulation because there is no need for it. The plowers can’t plow everywhere, and there aren’t enough of them because there is no need for them most of the time. There is no readily available street salt also because there is no need for it either, and there hasn’t been any need for it for dozens of years. So no, Israel was not ready for a snowpocalypse. Despite my prior flashbacks, this still isn’t Montreal. At least, a city like Montreal is always ready for the absolute worst because it’s bound to happen. So being completely unprepared, snow in Jerusalem is pure hell and I still hate snow with every fiber of my being.

Peace, love and have we paid our dues? Good, now let’s see some sunshine!

Daughter of Thunder

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I woke up to a cold and dreary morning. Gray skies, non-stop rain, winds blowing through the edges of the door and windows, making a loud and annoying whistling sound to scare the wits out of the dead.

Every year, I dread this time and pray that it will stop raining around me and instead rain only where it’s really needed (like in the Kinneret or on crops or whatever…)

I never deluded myself thinking I’m a typical Israeli or anything. I moved to Israel still not liking falafel, hummus, tehini or schwarma. And I never liked the cold. I never liked rain. I’ve liked snow only when I’ve never seen it, and once I did, I hated it every single time it reared its ugly white flaky head. I love heat. I love sweating. I try my best to stay as warm as possible. Rarely do I ever turn on the AC during the summer. And the heater is always on during winter. In winter, I never wear less than two layers of socks, two layers of pants, four layers of shirts, plus a sweater and a winter coat, with all the rest of my winter gear. And of course, I go on a healthy diet of teas and soups.

But besides all that, if there is one thing that can help me survive this horrible time of the year, it’s music. Music is my savior. The sky can be as gray as a corpse and the rain can be pounding down like hammers on an anvil, and none of it matters as long as my eardrums are vibrating to the sounds of my iPod. My inner child completely tunes out to the terrifying reality of winter, and imagines she’s in a huge crowd, watching the respective band or artist onstage. No matter how unrealistic or how impossible it may be. Jim Morrison may be dead, but she sees him live onstage. Same goes for Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, Kurt Cobain, Michael Jackson, Mia Zapata, all of them come to life in her world, and they all fill it with sunshine, blue skies, blooming flowers, and steaming hot temperatures.

Hoodie 2

And since my iPod is one of the only things keeping me from spiraling down into utter depression, I need to keep it safe as well. So before going out, I put my player in its pouch, put it in a plastic bag, wrap it up tight, put it in my backpack and cover it with other objects to keep it dry. I take it out only once I’m on the bus and go on to drown in my fantasy world of endless live shows.

Speaking of live shows, some of those aren’t so far fetched. Eluveitie, Arafel, Funset, Habanot Nechama, Aviv Geffen, Ozzy Osbourne, Slash, Rob Zombie, HaShlooliyot, and others have all been realities. Arch Enemy and King Diamond have also been realities and will be once more in August at Wacken. Amon Amarth will eventually become a reality also at Wacken. Amon Amarth is so cool. I’m still psyched over the hoodie I got. It’s currently my favorite item of clothing, and it also helps to keep me warm. Wrapped in the arms of wholesome, heart-warming viking metal, both in fabric and auditory form.

Ah, that’s the life!

Peace, love and swing that hammer Thor!

Pretty in Metal

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Last night, I was at a metal night in central Jerusalem. It’s a weekly thing and I’ve been enjoying it quite a bit. The problem is that now it’s starting to get really cold at night, and I hate to think about the impending wintertime with the rain and cold winds and snow and blahhhhh.

My cousin says he loves winter because it’s cloudy and dark. Dark, I can dig. I like dark too. But cloudy, no. Cloudy reminds me of things I don’t really care for, like Montreal weather.

However, I decided to try and keep a positive mindset. Like back in Italy, on that day where it looked like the Goddess took an enormous bath up in the heavens and then pulled out the plug from the drain, and my shoes got flooded up to the ankles, I kept a positive mindset by imagining I was walking on the shore of a beach on a cloudy day, and the water swishing around my shoes were the waves.

Amon Amarth Hoodie

So this winter, I decided to shop my winter blues away, starting with this fucking awesome Amon Amarth hoodie from eBay. This will not only help to keep me warm, but it’s also totally metal. I have no Amon Amarth merch, so this will be my first. It will also be awesome to wear for Amon’s show at Wacken this summer. Sure, it might be warm, but I’m suspecting they will go onstage sometime at night, and Germany is in Europe and I’ve been to Europe enough to know that summer doesn’t always equal warm. Especially at night. So yeah, I’ll be ready with my hoodie.

I also came across some really cute-yet-totally-badass dresses made from metal t-shirts of bands that I like, like Mercyful Fate and Arch Enemy. I thought it would be great to score one of these one-of-a-kind DIY dresses and wear it with the skulls tights I got at a second-hand sale last summer. Many of the dresses I came across were either too short or too colorful and looked like they will really not fit with my tights… until I came across this.

AE dressI’m not much of a dress chick, but sometimes I am. Haha! And this dress will look great on any metal night this winter, along with my skull tights and my black velvet winter jacket (with the metal buckles and the faux fur on the collar). That jacket is warm enough so that I won’t have to wear another layer to cover my arms and shoulders. I’m also really happy that the hem of the dress reaches right over the knee. All the other dresses I saw exposed way too much of the thigh, and mini dresses are totally not my thing. No matter how metal they are.

By the way, if the reader is also interested in more such kickass dresses, you can visit Dolly Darko’s Etsy page here.

I am still on the hunt for a Mercyful Fate hoodie, but I haven’t yet found the right one for me. These items are rare and rather expensive, and I’ve spent close to 400 NIS already. So I rather wait until I find the exact hoodie I like before blowing another 100 or 200 on it or something.

Peace, love and winter could be cool after all 🙂