Monday, April 1, 2013

Fun in the Sun

Bus in Downtown Jerusalem Baring Season's Greetings

Remebering exile never felt so good as it does here in Israel.

This year, the Jewish calendar is the earliest it will ever be as compared with the Gregorian calendar, or so I hear. It seemed like Purim had just ended when I first encountered Passover memorabelia this March. I remember walking into the supermarket and seeing the Passover stuff all out on display (including Kosher for Passover rice for my Sephardi friends). And thinking no!!! Not yet, too soon. Too soon for massive cleaning, too soon to stop eating bread.

Around Jerusalem, There Are Piping Hot Water Mikvas
to Kasher  Your Dishes for Passover
Chametz Being Wrapped Up in the Supermarket, Pre-Passover Prep

Here in Israel, and Jerusalem especially, Passover is really a national event. Here, instead of 1 day of Easter, we get 8 crazy nights... of chag for Passover. Technically, schools seem to get off at least 2 weeks. My drycleaner has closed shop and other stores go away. Pizzarias shut down but other restaurants often have Kosher for Passover  menus (with kosher certificates specifiying if the restaurant is kosher for kitneyot eaters or not).

Here, all chametz must be covered. It's the law, or risk being fined (which apparently many restaurants do in Tel Aviv)! Though interestingly, as a Passover gift, the army gave my lone-soldier roommate a sandwich press, which happen to be used quite often in Israel. Many companies likewise give special Passover gifts or bonuses.

So what have I been up to? A bunch of things, zipping here, visiting friends throughout Jerusalem, making my way to a hippy dippy Carlebach moshav for a special Chol Haomed festival with music, bbq, arts fair and  homeopathic medical consultation; eating in Kosher for Passover restaurants and watching my Sephardi friends enjoy kitneyot.

I could get used to this. And to top off a great week, off I go to Mimouna.... music, Moroccan pastries and more await. Editor's note: after publishing, I also went off to enjoy two late night slices of pizza. Throughout the city, people could be seen sitting in chametz filled shops chowing down.

Beware the Chametz! The Famous Marzipan Bakery in the Shuk Becomes Yet Another War Zone in the Middle East

\Kosher for Passover, Kitneyot Free Gnocchi in an Articoke Cream Sauce from Tmol Shilshom

Details of the Chol Haomed Festival at Carlebach Moshav, Mevo Mod'im. Yes, I did do the Keren Kayemit Walking  Tour!
Booths, Music, Nature at the Festival. Tons of Fun!

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