Showing posts from October, 2011

Jerusalem part 2.

!! שבת שלום
I met so many people in Jerusalem, from the weird guy selling bread at Sha'ar Iafo to that homeless free spirited religious man who hangs out near the Kotel and the Golden Menorah Replica who invited me for a walk around the old city ramparts before buying me tea. And his friend who lives underneath his shop on Rehov Chabad who gave me a picture of an aerial view of the Old Jerusalem and a large bottle of water for no apparent reason then invited me inside to watch french tv which he did not understand.
I am glad I am writing this, in a certain way it allows me to relive things I did not especially wrote down in my diary.
At the hostel, I met David who was volunteering there and told me about a Rabbi (of whom I have forgotten the name unfortunately) who welcomes anyone that shows up for Shabbat dinner on Friday night, Saturday at lunch and Saturday night for the Havdallah. And the word is on the street so sometimes the house located in Mea Shearim is too small to hold…

Jerusalem part 1.

Where was I?

On my way to Jerusalem. Tel-Aviv to Jerusalem, one hour by bus. I was never so happy to take a bus.

During my trip I kept coming back to this magnificent, so unique city.

After just two days, I knew my way around the old city which still had plenty of secrets for me to discover, but at least I knew where to go.
This city... it just made me feel like no other city never had. The history behind it, the legends, the atmosphere, everything just attracted me like a very strong magnet.

It felt so great. I won't tell you about what there is to see in Jerusalem because that is what travel guides are for and they probably have a better idea, I'm just going to talk about my experience of Jerusalem.
A hello here, a hello there as I walked the hundreds of year old steps of the Old City, as sellers were trying to get my attention and eventually my money. I never stopped. I was not there to buy made in china souvenirs, I was there to feel because Jerusalem is a city you have to…


Charles Lecharmant disait : "Je suis à la cage ce que le crapaud est au cigare."
"La pluie, le vent, la neige et les choux me font chavirer chaudement mais j'ai tout de même du mal à choisir entre chocolat et chamailleries chevalières telle un charlatan. La charmante mélodie si choyante que joyeuse et si attachante qu'affligeante du chamois chahuté chevauche mes songes les plus choyés. Je n'imagine point la gelée jaune gênante jasant avec la jumelle si chaude et gentille soit-elle.
Nous souviendrons-nous de ces après-midi journalières et ces jours passés à jacasser chaleureusement tout en chanson ? On se chuchotait des choses telles des chochottes jugeant non-chalamant une chèvre aux chevilles chavirantes sur une chaloupe. Une chaloupe ? Que dis-je ? Une salope, une salope alléchante et mal-lechée. Mais que signifie ce lynchage ? N'a-t-on plus l'âme charitable louche d'un chanoine dans sa cheminée ? Mais qui nous rendra donc nos chopes des charm…

Gilad Shalit will be coming back home after 5 years!

This new year 5772 starts beautifully as Gilad Shalit is to be freed in the next few days, announced the Israeli Prime Minister, Binyamin Netanyahu,  just a few hours ago.
After years of negotiations, Israel and Hamas have finally found an accord to release Gilad. "@IsraeliPM (The PM of Israel)  We have concluded ardeous negotiations with #Hamas to release #Gilad #Shalit. He will be coming home in the next few days" the PM tweeted.

In July, we celebrated the fifth anniversary of Gilad's abduction by the Hamas on Israeli grounds, now, he will be coming back home to his mother.

"@IsraeliPM (The PM of Israel)   the agreement to release #Shalit was signed in initials last Thursday and today was signed formally by the two parties"

Jaffa, bats, shopping and food.

Before leaving Tel Aviv for Jerusalem, I went to Jaffa. I didn't spend too much time there as everything was closed, I think it was Shabbat and I was leaving first thing the next morning to Jerusalem, but I still got to see many beautiful things that made me want to go back. And I did later during my trip. I must say I really fell in love with Jaffa. When I went back there I stayed at the Old Jaffa Hostel which was great, I enjoyed their rooftop lounge with the open air kitchen, it is a really nice place. Right across my hostel was the nicest little shop, Hasadna, where I bought many things. They do a lot of art objects with recycled materials, it's very interesting. A little further in the street, I discovered a very good restaurant where, for some strange reason, the waitress offered me a home made cookie and home made iced tea and I know I was the only customer to get that treatment. Puaa it was called, they have a french and english menu but I took the Hebrew one because …

Israel, benches and hotness.

So the first day I was in Tel Aviv I met Igal who owns a luggage shop on Rehov Ben Yehuda (74). I met him because I had blisters and I had to sit down to put plasters on my feet and on the first bench I sat on, there he was. It is so weird to arrive in a country where you expect to not understand anyone and out of the blue, someone starts talking to you in your own language then of course I told him I speak a little Hebrew and he lost me in a very long discussion that was in fact a monologue.
Why was I talking about him ? Ah yes, he expanded my Hebrew vocabulary, not very much but there are at least two words I clearly remember: devek ve'misparaim, glue and scissors, the first two items I remember buying in Israel. And why did I have to urgently buy these on my first day? So I could make the object of this post: my notebook (my preciouuuuuusssss).

I must say I hated Tel Aviv at first because it was my first day in a country I didn't know all alone and I had had such a bad expe…

And finally, as promised...

I have finally found the time  to publish parts of my travel notebook. Many of you have not seen it yet as I must admit I have not been seeing a lot of people this past summer. Anyway, I will not publish it all in one go and will certainly not publish it all because firstly there are just waaaaaay too many pages and secondly, some pages are just not worth it.

I will also add some pictures I took and I will take the time to write personally to everyone I have met and got their info during this journey.

I want to thank everyone that made this trip possible et plus particulierement ma maman who made everything possible to make it happen.

Thank you all for having followed me during these six incredible weeks, here's to you:

More good news, Kings, women's rights, and Steve Jobs.

Last night Steve Jobs died but I couldn't care less so instead I'll write about something else.
Last week King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia announced women will have a right to vote in the 2015 local elections (not the elections that were running this week as this would be too big a shock and way too sudden, you gotta give it time so people can get used to the idea).

I read the news on the BBC on Tuesday last week and the article was just very dull and reporting facts and that's probably how the news should be reported but I read this and my mind went "wait, this is really funny in a way, they fail to mention such and such". Then I went home in Belgium and bought the weekly "Le Canard Enchaîné" which expressed my point of view in a way I couldn't have formulated better myself.

Saudi Arabia is supposedly run according to the Sharia Laws but I find it a bit hypocritical to say that since it is the only country in the World where women don't have the …