This one's for you tants!!!! <3
Sorry it has been a while...between passover and traveling a bit its been pretty hectic this last week and a half.
Since the last time I posted I went to Yavne for Shabbat at the house of one of my coworkers. Her husband cooked an amazing meal for Shabbat dinner and Shabbat lunch. I spent the weekend speaking hebrew, playing with her kids and having a relaxing weekend!!! It was soo nice to be out of the city and surrounded by this wonderful family. Sunday morning I went to work with my coworker and realized it was going to be my only day of work that week because Pesach started that Monday night.
On Monday I spent the day working out and getting ready for Pesach. Went to one of my friend's for the Seder. It was definitely a different experience being at her Seder vs. my own back in NYC. Her uncle and father read through the whole hagada (where as back in new york we go around the whole Seder table for everyone to participate in the reading of the hagada) and therefore wound up getting to the meal pretty quickly. The food was amazing and lets just say you could probably have rolled me out of there...lol!
On Tuesday I went with my friend and her cousins to Cesarea for the morning and walked through the ruins over there and sat for coffee and tea at one of the cafes. That night we wound up staying in and watching a movie and just relaxing which was really nice.
Wednesday morning she dropped me off at my apartment where I spent the rest of Pesach. Wednesday afternoon my uncle's cousin picked me up and brought me to his home to meet the rest of his family. I proceeded to spend the rest of the afternoon and entire evening at their house. All I can say is that it is amazing how it feels to be with family. They welcomed me with open arms and made me feel at home! She fed me very well....I had my first and only matza brie of the holiday and a ton of other food...again was stuffed to the brim...lol!!! They helped me figure out how to get to an art museum in Holon and a bunch of other questions I had they answered. I cannot thank them enough and I look forward to keeping in touch with them for the rest of my stay and thereafter!
On Thursday I went to the Tel Aviv Art Museum with one of my friends from WUJS. During the week of Pesach all museums are open for free so it was definitely worth it to visit. It was great to see the art and there was one exhibit in particular that took my breath away...I wish I could have taken a few of his paintings home with me ;) The rest of the day was spent with my roommates getting pedicures and having a nice night out!
Friday my cousin picked me up and we went to a private art show. The artist finds these amazing stones within nature and melts metal around the stone and then puts glass stones in different patterns on top of the big stone...my explanation does not do her justice....needless to say her artwork is amazing and i was truly inspired. Then we went to the Azrieli Center (Tel Aviv's version of Roosevelt Field Mall - Shopping Mall) and walked around a bit...went into H&M...where everything is double the price...and then went to the Herzliyya marina for lunch with my cousins. Then we sat on their boat for a little while and enjoyed the weather and the water. The rest of the night was pretty low key...dinner with some more WUJS friends and then bedtime....I needed to get a good nights sleep for my day up North on Saturday.
Saturday I went up North to Haifa and Akko with my friend and her cousins. We visited the Bahai Gardens and had lunch overlooking the water in Akko. It was amazing!!! I was soo lucky to have traveled around this holiday! That night I spent walking around the cute town of Neve Tzedek - the oldest town in Tel Aviv.
Sunday I had a half day of work and then came back to Tel Aviv where I walked around Neve Tzedek (this time with my camera) and then south on the Tayelet to Yaffo. We walked by Aboulafia (that ones for you Mom :) ) but it wasn't open because of Pesach and also Dr. Shakshuka which is supposed to have the most amazing Shakshuka. The rest of the night was pretty low key.
Monday was a great day besides that it was the last day of Pesach...yay for bread at sundown....it was another day where I explored Tel Aviv with one of my roommates. We walked all the way from our apartment to the water up north on the tayelet to the Tel Aviv Port and then back down through the city.....for those of you who don't know Tel Aviv...our walk lasted 5 hours...we then broke Pesach on pancakes and french toast...yummmm!!! The night ended with a birthday celebration of one of my fellow wujies! (oh and one of the last stops we made on our tour through the city was Dizengoff Square....I finally felt like I saw the Tel Aviv that I remembered from years ago...it reminded me of the first time I had come to Tel Aviv with my family (back in '97 during Pesach)...when we used to take walks at night from our hotel to the center of town...don't you remember? I miss you guys!!!! <3 <3 <3)
Today also turned out to be a great day. We had a trip to the Rubin Museum where I saw amazing art work by Reuven Rubin. His wife was one of the first members of Young Judea so there was a nice connection between the museum and our program (since WUJS is part of Young Judea). Then we went to Yarkon Park (Tel Aviv's Central Park) and went paddle boating for part of the afternoon....then wound up taking a little bit of a detour on our way back to the apartment but finally made it back safe and sound!!! I took an amazing kickboxing class at the gym...which made me feel sooo good....and then it was time to get ready for the daily grind of the rest of the week!
And I forgot to mention....most importantly yesterday I booked my plane tickets to Greece!!!!!! I'm super excited to start planning that trip!
It probably sounds like I didn't have much enthusiasm in my post today but I'm definitely having an amazing time...just a little tired tonight but I wanted to get this post out to you since it had been sooo long. Pesach in Israel was amazing...although this wasn't my first time in Israel during Pesach (I was lucky enough to have come with my family for the first time 14 years ago...I know how crazy...I'm getting old...lol) but this time I wasn't staying in hotels I was living here on my own....every supermarket only sold kosher for passover food...mostly every restaurant that was open was either totally kosher for passover or had passover options...so it was soo easy to keep kosher over here.
I'm really working through all my ups and downs and feel like everyday im growing as a person...which is a major reason why I came out here....to find out who am I...who is Dina J. Silberstein??
To everyone back home thank you for all your support...your phone calls...emails...messages and facebook posts...(keep them coming!!!) they definitely remind me what a lucky person I am!!!
Til the next post...Laila Tov...Love u alll!!!!