Friday, December 31, 2021

Needed In Afterlife


The shopping Race  before holidays, reminds me of a common reaction heard from people :Hey, what do you need all this stuff for? Remember, you'll take nothing with you when you leave this world!

True, but that wasn't  so in antiquity. I learnt about it at the archeological museum (one of the finest in Europe) of Heraklion, Crete island. There was a section in the museum that attracted many visitors, as it displayed exhibits found in people's graves at cemeteries: tools, weapons, clothes, jewelry, worship figurines, decorations, household items.    Interesting!

People in ancient times demanded to be buried with their belongings as they believed they 'll need the stuff in Afterlife. Not a good idea. Soon after the burial, the grave was opened by thieves and robbers. 

Swords and brooches were noted as being among the most commonly taken items from the graves, probably because these items were given as gifts and passed on across generations providing folk stories and fond memories. Still, even after the robberies, there was enough stuff left for the modern archeological excavations to discover.

(I noticed a newspaper picture there of Liz Taylor wearing a golden brooch  in the form of a bull horn designed according to the original item found during an excavation. I included the photo in the post I wrote in 2016, after my visit at the museum).

                                                                               Liz Taylor

I  believe that behind the Afterlife scenario, there's also the very human tendency to get attached to items, as it often occurs to me . This tendency makes it hard to impossible to declutter the house. Sometimes, the item has neither money value nor sentimental one. I just happen to like it, and even though I don't use it, or it takes up space, I won't get rid of it. So, there  goes my decluttering.


Sunday, December 26, 2021

Ubersetzt Und Verbessert


The above title  is a well-known german expression referring to translation, and  meaning 'translated and improved', that is, the translated version is better than the original one.

This expression could be applied to any form of 'conversion' , not only from language to language. Food , for example. Sometimes, a version of a certain dish is better than the original one.

The vegetarian pizza, a popular dish, has its modern roots in Naples, south Italy. I happened to eat pizza in Naples and in other parts of Italy, and didn't like it. I constantly compared it to my local pizza in Israel, and concluded  that  the local one was much improved, it tasted better.

                                vegeterian pizza - slices

There's another kind of pizza  'on the market',  a non-vegetarian pizza with a minced meat topping (lamb or beef) mixed with minced veggies and herbs.  This pizza is of turkish-armenian origin, and is named 'lahmajoun' (or lahmacun). They introduce it in a taboon oven, which is hot enough to cook the raw meat and dough simultaneously and the result is "to die for".


 the taboon

There was an eatery near my place of work based on this turkish delicacy. So, I had quite a few lahmajouns at that time. Once, I told someone (a tourist guide) that the first thing I 'll do if, and when I visit Turkey is to have an authentic lahmajoun. Ha,ha, ha, was his reaction,  authentic or not, this, here, is the best lahmajoun you'll ever  get.

Remembering my experience with pizza in Italy, I said to myself, that maybe he was right. Perhaps, the Israelis found a way to ..."verbesser' (improve) the original.

Nowadays, I seldom eat pizza or lahmajoun. I do however, eat almost daily 'tahini' (techina in hebrew), the one and only,  the sauce that goes well with any pizza and with everything else. I don't care about  its origins and versions. I rely only on my own version. I buy the main ingredient - sesame-seeds' paste , and make it as Sinatra would say -  'My way', adding the essential three items: lemon juice, garlic, water.


* web pictures

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Eggplants - from Farm to Table.

Eggplants (aubergine)  are a favorite of mine and  I buy them often. I like eggplants for their fiber, taste, and versatility of use. ( My method of cooking, by the way : on the stove top over direct flame - messy but delicious). 

                    standard looking eggplants

During the last years one sees huge eggplants in various purple shades, in addition to the  normal looking eggplants . I'll buy, of course, the normal size, shape, and color, as the huge ones are probably grown with pesticides and hormones (non organic, non - GMO food). 

big eggplant

My approach applies to all veggies and fruits. When shopping at the market or grocery store I'll choose only those food items that resemble in size, shape, color, taste  the ones I'm used to, since childhood.

From reading, I understand that eggplants are very popular in south-eastern asian countries , such as Bangladesh . Eggplants (known there as Brinjal)  are  grown as genetically modified from 2014. Those in favor of GMO claim that the crops are  good (reduced pesticide), the farmers' profits high, and that  it gives the people of this  country some food security.

                                                                     Brinjal eggplants                   

                                    Brinjal chart

As far as I know, GMO is bad for human consumption. After all,  veggies and fruits are our body's nutrition and fuel. We take from them vitamins, minerals, protein, fiber -  all necessary to make body and mind work. We don't wish our nutrition to get genetically manipulated in the lab.

Lately, there's been a lot of talk about possible food insecurity in the world as a result of Climate Change and the Covid-19 pandemics. I believe we might indeed face, at some point, food insecurity and even famine. This calls for alertness, as it may bring GMO into the picture.


 *  web pictures

Tuesday, December 14, 2021

Caring For The Future Generation


New Zealand's  planned Ban on tobacco ,  makes me smile, for two reasons. The first one - I like the idea and approve of it; the second one, it reminds me of my beloved father (rip).

According to the Media, New Zealand will ban the sale of cigarettes to anyone born after 2008, under a law expected to be enacted next year, to make sure young people never start smoking. 


On the day he was told by the doctor he had to quit smoking, my father  just "walked away" from cigarettes  without ranting. He was a quiet, timid person, but had willpower and self-control.


                            My father David

Most people have strong opinions on everything, but ..weak character. Thus, many of them easily fall into addictions: tobacco, alcohol, drugs, gambling - to name  but a few (the really bad ones), and can hardly, if at all, get out of it. These addictions could ultimately destroy the addicted and his/her family. They also  heavily affect the State's social and health budgets.

In my father's days, there were no support groups,  online forums, medications, rehabilitation centers. One had to be highly motivated and stop on his own, take matters in his own hands, as they say. It was  challenging but possible.

In general, addictions are seen as "a life long enemy, and recovery as a daily battle". I believe that's true; therefore a lot of thought should be given to prevention. New Zealand's act is a small but positive step in this direction.

Monday, December 6, 2021

Get Prepared, Get Candles


Candles , as a source of light, warmth, and decor - are  great, versatile items, and an interesting subject. We celebrate, pray, mourn, honor, decorate, etc.. with lighted candles in the background.

We use candles on festive occasions  (holidays, anniversaries) , on solemn occasions (prayers , funerals, Remembrance ceremonies), as decorations and gifts, as emergency light during power outages, etc... 

It has to be mentioned and emphasized that candles are a fairly good (not powerful) option of energy during emergency/survival times for lighting, cooking and heating.  They can be stored in large quantities, produce minimal toxins when burned, and are easy to use.

       emergency candle (web photo)

The variety of candles seems to be endless. There are factory - made candles of various sizes , hand-made candles with natural ingredients, fragrant candles, colorful candles, survival candles.  I've got samples of almost any of the above mentioned types, but I tend to use mainly  the basic, factory- made candles.

We've just made it through the eight days of Hanukkah holiday, at the center of which there's a Menorah (lamp) and... Candles.

          Menorah and    Hanukkah  candles  (web photo)

'Hanukkah' celebrates miracles done by God in ancient times  to help the nation get rid of foreign oppressors, recover Jerusalem and rededicate the Second Temple.                

Both adults and children love this holiday which is also called the 'Festival of Lights' (Hag Haurim)., especially as it is accompanied by eating of donuts, and singing of lovely, specific songs.

The Menorah or Hanukkia  has 9 candle holders : one for each of the eight nights; the ninth candle is the 'shamash' (helper) ; it helps to light the other candles.

I love candles in the house,  as they illuminate with a low glow creating an intimate atmosphere of warmth and relaxation. There are people who even believe that light of a candle drives away 'the evil eye'.


Monday, November 29, 2021

Poets And Money


 I never really paid attention to the  human figures on banknotes, until recently when I wished to get a closer look at the face of  the poetess, Rachel,  on the 20 NIS (new israeli shekel) paper bill. 



I was surprised  there was no mention of her name, only a line from one of her poems "And Perhaps", (poem that had been turned into one of the most beautiful, beloved Israeli song of all times). 

I checked the other three banknotes with poet figures :      Saul Tchernichovsky on the green 50 NIS banknote, Leah Goldberg on the orange 100 NIS banknote, Natan Alterman  on the  blue 200 NIS banknote. No names, only a line from their work on the back of the banknote.

                                            the four poets in the series of banknotes

There was one name ,though, on the paper bills, the name of economist Karnit Flog,  Bank of Israel Governor at the time of the emission of the poets' banknote series in 2014-2017.         I found that rather unfair and frustrating.  However, maybe, there's a reason for not mentioning the poets'  names - I'll have to try and find out what it is.

Rachel Bluwstein (1890-1931)  known by her first name 'Rachel',  interests me not only for her lovely, simple poems, but also as a woman, and as a person with a tragic life (she died untimely of tuberculosis). Lake Kinneret (The Sea of Galilee) was her whole world (and she was buried close to it).

                              Rachel's grave at Kinneret cemetery (Wikipedia)


"And Perhaps" (Ve Ulai) - lyrics


And perhaps, these things never happened, never existed

And perhaps, I never rose at dawn to work in the field with my own hands,   by the sweat of my brow

On the long, blazing days of harvest / while on top of a cart with sheaves/ I never did  raise my voice in song

Never did I purify myself with innocence, in the azure waters of my Kinneret

Oh, my Kinneret / were you real or was it my dream?


                                singer Ester Ofarim


Tuesday, November 23, 2021

OREO - 'The Blue Uniting Force'

The incredible 'Oreo' industry of biscuits, wafers, cookies, cakes, chocolate - you name it -  has quite an history behind it. They first appeared on the market in 1912! They boast a 100 year of activity! 

The juicy part - the disagreement between the two brothers-owners who eventually had to split,  actually led to the big prosperity of the business. The first two letters of the Oreo name - 'Or',  is french for 'gold'. Perhaps, a hint to the business being a gold mine for its owners.

I'm familiar with one product only : it comprises two  tiny, thin,  brown biscuits with dark chocolate cream between them  (a sandwich cookie). 'Thin and tiny' sure gives one the illusion of less  dietary damage caused by the sweet item, so people go for it.

The first time I bought the above ( to accompany my morning coffee)  I was looking on the package for the name of the supplier, and that's what I found: Ukraine, company name: Mondelez.  In fact, the country of origin is USA,  Mondelez is the international mother company, with branches all over the world.

The products are vegan and kosher. There is a great variety of shapes  (round, oval, button-like), of texture (crisp, soft, creamy), sizes, flavors, and wrappings with the background color of deep blue. 

It seems  this merchandise  is popular everywhere (at my local supermarket Oreo products are quite the Hit),  as it is a suitable treat for everyone - kids, adults, poor, rich, secular, religious. It fits every taste and pocket.  We could rightly say  - it 'brings  us together'.  In the divisive world we live, that's quite a lot.


Tuesday, November 16, 2021



Since the start of the pandemics, I 've stayed  closer to home, going out / traveling - for essentials only.  This week, before the coming of the promised rains, and of  a possible new Covid wave (God forbid!), I took  the time to explore a little the immediate surroundings of my hometown and some landmarks in one of its adjacent towns. 

Not far from my neighborhood, I've spotted a small plot with trees whose trunks were white painted. I suppose it's for protection purposes - to protect them from the sun. Sun rays might crack the tender bark and so allow introduction of disease and insects. I gather the paint is water based or water diluted, so that no chemical harm is done to the tree.   Some of the trunk shapes look rather strange. Perhaps it's a special type of trees.

On  approaching the trees, a single hen crossed my way and conquered my heart; such a cutie!

Whenever I visit a town where there's a lot of construction being done, I get the impression that architecture (or shall we say architects) are looking for noise and publicity rather than for comfort and functionality.  What makes me think that, are not only the  towers  standing out in a variety of somewhat weird shapes, but also the use of certain building materials.

The exterior of the 9-story relatively new City Hall building in the adjacent town of Herzliya, for instance,  is made of blue glass.  I suppose the glass is not only for decorative purpose but has certain anti-reflective and security features. Anyway, one can see through the blue glass, from the inside out, but not vice versa.

 City Hall of Herzlyia town
I guess proper maintenance of this glass exterior , to assure its attractiveness and life span, doesn't come cheap, but ,Hey, what are municipal taxes for?
                                    For a short while, feeling free without the mask

By the way, judging by the low numbers in the Israely Media (attributed to the third dose, the booster)  one would think the pandemic is on its way out. I wish it were, but I'm  rather skeptical (the approaching winter, the disappearing masks, etc... ) .The issue discussed now is the vaccination next month of children aged 5-11.

Tuesday, November 9, 2021

Those Were The Days...


I remember the days when the neighbor next door used to ask my parents for a small loan until he gets the wages. With the appearance of the new banking system promoting overdraft and credit cards - it stopped. The neighbor no longer needed my parents. for the loan.

I remember well the days when our street was lively  and colorful, with voices and movement. And then, it gradually became deserted, as people went inside to watch TV and work on the PC. Interaction was maintained at nuclear family level  mainly.

(One evening, I stumbled on the pavement and fell badly  on my right shoulder. I was unable to get up. There was no soul around to help me stand on my feet, It was then that I realized the severity of the changes we were undergoing).

Next, people started to look for bigger apartments with more rooms. Each child in his own room, with his laptop and mobile phone. At this stage,  interaction between family members got disrupted too.

I so miss the youngsters' politeness and respect for older people of  those days!  Now, I sometimes can't believe my eyes and ears. They don't even fear the old advice given by parents: 'If you wish to reach that old person's age, you better behave yourself!'  It makes them smile or even laugh.

How does the song go? : "those were the days my friend/ we thought they'd never end". Well, apparently they do end. And now we all talk about the big change, Climate Change and the Glasgow summit conference.

It gives us a lot to talk and think about. It's just that  I 'm not sure we've got enough time for it. It's kind of urgent. We should better concentrate on what we can do - planning rescue and survival - not on what we cannot do - preventing  Nature's disasters.


Tuesday, November 2, 2021

Oh, The Price, The Price...


Our price labeling law is 23 years old. It is a good law for us, consumers.  The price label on the item  enables us to  easily know the price of an item, make comparisons,  take right buying decisions.

The supermarket chains hate this law; it makes it hard for them to raise prices whenever they want. So, when a new economy minister takes over , they immediately start putting pressure on him to cancel it. So far, without success.

Now, I learn from the Media that they're close to winning.The new economy minister (a woman, by the way) is cooperating with the populist proposal that the price be displayed  on the shelf only, not sticking a label on the item itself.

 tiny yellow price sticker on top of item

                  price on shelf 

Hopefully , the law stays intact, otherwise it will be a blow to the consumer, to  competition, and to price stability. This law is of  utmost importance , especially now in 2021, as prices are up as a result of the pandemics, and its supply disruptions. 

The price tag label gun works intensely these days.  In addition to the rise in prices, there's fear of inflation and of shortage in products. So far I see shortage in some imported, non-vital items, but who knows what's next.

There's no  market in my hometown, and specially commuting to one in the nearby area is hardly worth it considering the  high prices and low variety in today's markets.  Our local supermarket is not bad compared to other supermarkets and even to markets. The only drawback is its location, on the edge of the town. I don't want to get on and off a car or bus with my shopping cart, and walking to and fro takes some time and effort.


Wednesday, October 27, 2021



Occasionally, I get hurt by someone's behavior and feel helpless and frustrated; there's nothing I could do about it to ease my anger. The 'kapparot' ritual has given me some idea, but I haven't put it into practice yet , probably never will.

Kapparot (plural of kappara - atonement) in Judaism is a ritual performed on the eve of Yom Kippur ( the Atonement Day), by which the sins of a person  are symbolically transferred to a fowl (usually a hen - for a woman, a rooster for a man).

The fowl is passed over one's head three times, and there's a prayer to be said; in English it sounds like that: "this is my exchange, this is my substitute, this is my atonement. This rooster (hen) will go to its death, while I will enter and proceed to a good, long life and to peace".


The ritual is considered by many as  cruel, and rightly so. Why transfer our sins to the fowl? what has it done to us? Why does it deserve this kind of treatment? because it's about to be slaughtered to provide  meat  for our meals?(The alternative proposed is to use money instead, which will then be given to charity).

Like many others, I'm against this ritual and against slaughtering animals (although, I admit , I eat meat now and then, out of habit and of fear the body might face shortage of some vital nutrient).

Now, what about the idea I got from this ritual?  I could mention three times the name of the person who has done me wrong , and say the prayer by which my sins will be transferred to him/her (omitting, of course, the death part in the prayer. I  wish no one to die ). Let him/her carry and deal with this burden, as revenge for  misbehavior towards me.  It may sound stupid and or childish, but talking or writing about this possibility makes me already feel a little better:)

web pictures


Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Professor Emeritus and the Chinese Law


There was a sad story in our Media, some two weeks ago. A well - known professor of philosophy, and literary critic, aged 88, sitting in a wheelchair surrounded by boxes full of his archive files - in an appeal to the public: 'help me, don't let them throw me out of my flat'. To make a long story short, he owed a lot of rent money, and so he got a court order asking him to evict the flat.

I  was especially intrigued by the comments to the story.  The commenters mentioned  the university, colleagues, students, the Ministry of Education and other factors which should , according to them, intervene and solve the problem.  No doubt, the problem will get solved, but I asked myself how come nobody mentioned his children, his family? 

'Perhaps he doesn't have any', I said to myself and went to check with the Wikipedia. Well, he does have children - two sons from his third ex-wife (also a professor). The rumor has it that he used to beat his wife, and so they have all three estranged themselves from him . If the rumor is correct, I can understand them, and yet at his age and condition, they should have shown some forgiveness and empathy, not leave it all to the State and the public.

The story has reminded me of a Chinese law ( no, not the notorious one which allows a couple to have one child only) - a law from 2013 which requires children to keep in touch with their parents who are 60 and older, in addition to making sure their financial and spiritual needs are met. If children do not comply, they face fines and lawsuits. I think every country should have such a law.

Thursday, October 14, 2021

Politicians and Photos


I usually dislike  politicians, but there are a few exceptions. One of them is Angela Merkel, until recently the chancellor of Germany. There's something nice ,human and honest about her, that one doesn't find in the others.  Besides, I have a photo of her as a.....nudist :)

I feel uncomfortable to publish the photo here, although she looks great in it. If you're the curious type you could look it up on the internet.  It is a photo with three young nudist girls - students; one of them is Angela. 

The photo appeared in newspapers and magazines. She was asked about it but refused to comment. Representatives of Germany in various countries were also asked about the photo; they too refused to comment.

The general belief is that it is her in the photo. First, the physical resemblance. Secondly, the background. She grew up in communist East Germany. The photo is believed to have been taken at the nudist camp Costinesti (at the Black Sea), in communist Romania.

After the second World War, nudism was encouraged under communism, as a way of returning  to embrace Nature, and as a symbol of rebellion against the old order of things. It was believed that Angela Merkel was a member of a nudist movement called "Free Body Culture" (in german - Frei Korpercultur").


Another politician for whom I have a 'soft spot' is Boris Johnson the current P.M. of Britain. 

There's a photo involved here too. It shows Boris as a young volunteer on a kibbutz (agricultural collective community) in Israel. In summer 1984, he and his sister Rachel were volunteers at kibbutz  Kfar Hanassi in northern Israel.

According to his sister, he worked in the communal kitchen, scrubbing pots and pans; according to a leader of the kibbutz he also worked in the fields.

 B.J. in Israel - desert mountains in the background

Anyway, he looks very cute with his short pants and blond hair. How could you not like him.


Friday, October 8, 2021

Things Have Gone Too Far

The other day, I  was looking for some water-based paint to re-freshen a few furniture pieces in my home. These pieces are easy to clean and move, hence my wish to protect them and prolong their life.  

Over the years, I had to take some hard decisions such as replacing old, but beautiful ,solid wooden items that I liked, with lighter items - just because I didn't want to work hard , or be dependent on cleaning ladies.

While in the store, I heard someone call my name with a question mark intonation at the end. I turned my head but saw no one familiar.  After a few seconds, I heard my name again and a woman, whom I did not recognize,  approached me and introduced herself. She was an acquaintance, a former neighbor. 

Her mask was under the chin, but with or without the  mask, I couldn't have recognized her, as her face was totally changed. She looked different, obviously as a result of  plastic surgery.

I'm very much in favor of people trying to improve their appearance and confidence by softening wrinkles, even reshaping the nose which is right in the middle of the face - but changing the whole face - that's crazy.  

 Not young, not wealthy... not ugly either, just an ordinary woman;  so what's got into her, why all this?I didn't ask her any questions. I hoped, perhaps, she'd raise the subject herself, but she didn't. So , though shocked, I tried to behave naturally.

She rearranged her mask to cover nose and mouth, and keeping distance, we exchanged a few nice, polite words for old time's sake.


Thursday, September 30, 2021

La Palma and Human Helplessness



The fascinating pictures of red fire and black lava coming from La Palma (Spain , the Canary islands) make us for a moment forget the huge destruction caused by the volcano's eruption, and the problematic existence of islands in this era of Climate  Change.

The eruption started on 19 of September, and is not completely over yet.  "All we can do is cry", said a young woman who lost her home and shop.

There are things in life that we could  control, both as nations and as individuals: birth rate and nutrition, for example. Yet, we do little to nothing about that, and so,  we fail to improve things  on the national and on the personal level.

What then, are our chances to control the uncontrollable? (Yes, climate and Nature's whims are uncontrollable by humans, in my very humble opinion). The answer to my above question is not an optimistic one.

The big plan , supported by scientists and heads of state, is to reduce gas emissions to zero, and invest in renewable energy. These are good things;  they should be done regardless of climate change, will take time - time that we do not have. It's a very slow, inefficient process,  full of obstacles, and requiring global action.

Nevertheless, we should not lose hope ; we should work on it,  parallel to our main efforts to avoid /minimize disaster caused by climate change.

To try and avoid / minimize Nature's disasters we should first stop ignoring what science  tells us about the melting ice in Antarctica, the sea level rise, the increased frequency and intensity of  hurricanes, floods, wild fires, droughts, earthquakes, volcano eruptions.  'Knowledge is power'.

We could next try to redesign our homes, cities, coastlines;   consider relocation, plan how to assure adequate supply of food , water, and shelter.   

Not easy, not cheap - but we have to keep in mind that according to scientific predictions, latest by 2050  (make it 2040) many islands and cities in various parts of the world will be ....under water.


Saturday, September 25, 2021

The Volunteers are The Best Part.


Twice a year, before the start of the two major holidays Passover and New Year, the municipality sends a box of food products to its senior citizens. Nice initiative but...I'm sometimes unhappy with some of the box's content.

I don't know how it works, and who's in charge of the project there, but it's done with minimum of thought and logic.

Elderly people try to keep away from the unofficial 'killers' : sugar, salt, oil. In the box, these are  dominant items both as stand alone (1 kilo sugar, 1 kilo salt, 1 bottle of oil) and as part of the various products (coca cola bottles - not the diet or zero version - but the classic one with all the sugar and calories; several tins of tuna - in oil, not in water).

People like to drink coffee, but the only type in the box is always the strong, black, turkish coffee which might cause or increase insomnia at a certain age.  Ketchup is a constant. I wish some of it be replaced by a few fresh tomatoes.

The good stuff in the box is the one that helps with observing the holiday tradition, and I feel grateful for that:  for Passover - a big package of matzot (unleavened bread), eggs, potatoes, a jar of 'gefilte fish' (egg-shaped patties made of  ground carp fish), a package of matza flour for making  soup balls , a bottle of non-alcoholic wine.

soup balls
'gefiilte fish'  with carrot topping

For New Year, a small jar of honey, traditional honey cake , apples, eggs, a bottle of wine. (Dipping slices of apple in honey is symbolic of  a sweet, abundant New Year).

honey and apples

The box is brought in by one or two young volunteers, in their last year of high school, methink. They deserve  a big hug for their heart-warming effort and caring.

* web pictures



Sunday, September 19, 2021

Ready To Fast?


Last week we celebrated the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur), with fasting and prayers.

The day before, I left home in the morning without any breakfast , and by late afternoon I was famished. I stopped at an eatery and ordered a 'schawarma' portion ( a pita pocket stuffed with roasted  meat, salad, and chips)+ a small bottle of cold soda water. I ate it at a table outside. The portion was unusually spicy, and being very hungry, I ate it hastily.


                                                                      schawarma skewer

I reached home having a burning thirst and an upset stomach. I drank some water and tea, but  felt no much improvement. Suddenly,  my eyes fell on the bowl with sabra fruit (cactus prickle pear).  'Here comes my salvation', I thought. I remembered reading somewhere that the sabra calms down the digestive system by absorbing whatever irritates it.

Well, salvation it was. At the third fruit, I felt much better. In fact, I felt wonderful.

This fruit has always been a favorite of mine for its taste and texture (I even put it on the sidebar of my blog and I wrote a post on it in Oct. 2017). Now, I've learnt that "there's more to it than meets the eye" as they say. 

I was glad to be ready for next day's evening - the beginning of  the 25 hours of fasting, hours with no liquid, no solid food. The Yom Kippur day and the fasting are very important to me spiritually.

The sabra fruit is small but encased in a thick, semi- thorny peel . It's not cheap, but I always buy some when it's available at the grocery store.

 * Web pictures


Sunday, September 12, 2021

New in Town


Finally, the defibrillator, the external life- saving device during cardiac arrest, has been installed in our town. It is placed in public locations, mainly on lottery kiosks and old payphone booths. 

yellow device on the kiosk's outer wall

The defib. is meant for untrained people who by pushing the right button activate an electric shock  helping the collapsed person survive until ambulance with the rescue team arrives. Everyone on the street, they  say, could be a life saver.

I 've noticed, though,  there are no instructions on this yellow colored device, except for the one, demanding to dial the urgency number 101 when an emergency occurs.  Probably at that number one gets the necessary information on what needs to be done (buttons are under lock).

As I understand, Mifal Hapais (national Lotttery of Israel),  which owns the lottery kiosks,  is funding these devices.The phone booths are the property of the giant phone company Bezek. 

As most of  the phone booths are not in use any more, but still need some maintenance,  it is  now for the Magen David Adom (Israel's national Emergency organization) to bear the responsability for them; it's a win-win situation.

                                                           empty phone booth

                                       simple top booth with functioning phone


May we never need to use the defib! The sad reality, however, is that we often hear about cases of cardiac arrest. There's even a rise in the number of cases now, probably having something to do with the Covid infection.


Monday, September 6, 2021

The Article and Its Author


There's an old article (published some 25 years ago) which I re-read from time to time.  It is entitled 'The Thinking Person's Guide to Perfect Health', written by the american Ron Kennedy M.D.  Only recently have I become aware of the fact that the author has  a whole book on the subject ( it sells at Amazon, and it's not cheap).

Anyway, I'm  quite satisfied with the 13-page internet article. I like everything about it : style , approach, and message. I got to it in my quest for information on the glaucoma eye disease. My late Mother suffered of glaucoma, and in her late years became blind.

I remember myself feeling very frustrated with what standard medicine had to offer once the disease was detected - mainly drops to lower the pressure built up in the eye liquid, but the drops and the other meds didn't stop the progress of the disease towards blindness.

The other day,  when I wished to  re-read the above article, I found out the last 2 pages were missing. I decided to look for it and type it again. Well, it seems to have disappeared from the Web; that might probably have something to do with possible interference in the  selling of the book.

While looking for the article, I have learnt that the doctor, owner of an anti-aging clinic, is being charged with having provided illegal written exemption from vaccination for three children. I've  also come upon the info that a book of his against vaccines has been in the headlines for some 20 years (never heard of it; I wish I could get hold of it/ I'm curious of what he has to say on this hot topic ).

I'm not surprised he gets himself into trouble . He's not a conventional doctor. He calls himself a nutritional doctor, one that believes that the vitamins and minerals in our nutrition can heal our body, not the synthetic drugs. He advocates curing by nutrient therapy. 

In his article, he names the FDA 'an Old Boys' Club', and the NIH a mighty organization with a small corner only for progressive medicine.  He promises that if we follow the principles outlined in his article we'll never have to visit his medical office.

I must admit he sounds rather convincing to me.  We can have control of nutrition, much less of stress, not at all of genetics. The right nutrition and mineral /vitamin supplements could  eliminate or lower our need for 'doctor's appointment'.


Tuesday, August 31, 2021

Global Challenges


The world is facing now two major challenges: Climate Change and Covid 19. The general opinion is that there should be some global action initiated by a global factor to tackle these challenges. 

Yes, but who? The UN is a farce; the great powers are fiction. Besides, the world was created as a highly divided place, geographically and otherwise, and that makes it very hard, almost impossible, to find global solutions.  

My personal opinion as someone who believes in the supernatural power named God, is that  these two challenges belong to God's domain. Only He has control of the virus and of the Climate. We should, therefore pray to God , individually and directly, asking for salvation. 

It might help, unless God is determined to reset His Creation ( the world, the universe), making it a better place, less divided, and especially with no races. Racism and racial conflicts are  a never-ending issue which gradually and steadily destroy the world.

Anyway, we have reason to be scared. I believe the disasters (fires, floods, storms, earthquakes, volcano eruptions) are near the door . People act as if it's something in the future. No, it's happening now, in the present.

Our winters in Israel are usually mild, and buildings are built accordingly. Well, during our last winter, I told myself that I'd better move out before the roof moves in; that bad.

People tend to associate climate change with pollution. I believe pollution has little to do with that; it doesn't reach the very upper sphere where climate is being "cooked". But even if it does affect  climate as many of us believe , and not only our health,  hypocrisy won't lead us far; there's constant talk about plastics, but almost no mention of cars and their big role in creating pollution.

Anyway,  I'm open to ideas and suggestions about some significant global action operated by and through God 's Will that could give us  Hope.

Wednesday, August 25, 2021

Public Demand


I remember the days when there was a public demand to charge heavy smokers for their lung treatments. Nowadays , there's a demand / suggestion to charge non-vaccinated people for treatments, or even better , not treat them at all.
(The virus,  will luckily disappear somehow, but it will not be  due to vaccines and vaccination).

Anyway, I would like to add a few more categories to the above list of those who should be charged :

Parents that send  their kids out without a mask. Kids are considered big virus spreaders; most of them are symptomless.

Large families.  Schools, hospitals and other public facilities are practically blocked by large families;  there is constant shortage of beds, school rooms, staff. These families are paid generous allowances which help them stay ...large ( have lots of kids). 

Maybe the pandemic will bring about  a change in demographics, as hospitals and schools are collapsing; teachers and doctors are on the run (at least in my neck of the woods).

People that practice bad nutrition habits: eat out often, cook and bake with unhealthy ingredients, and then....go for  "doctor's appointment".  Nutrition  is crucial to one's health.To ignore this is to fall 'heavy' on the medical care system and on the public budget.

Dog owners should be charged for their dog's loud, intensive barking which could cause an aged passerby to have a heart attack. It's  not theory. I once witnessed such an unfortunate happening. 

Musicians that practice in an apartment of a complex, should be charged with a tiny fee by the neighbors who have to put up with something that interferes with their daily life. I've had a pianist as neighbor, and I know all about it. I myself didn't mind the music, but the others felt very relieved when she moved out.


Thursday, August 19, 2021

Red Wine


The High Holidays are approaching, and wine is an essential element on every family's festive table.

I'm used to drink with my meals (not only on holidays) , red wine, which is actually 100% red grapes juice, with no addition of water, sugar, coloring.  It's produced by Carmel winery, the largest brand in the Israeli wine market, and it's called Tirosh Carmel. 

I like to mix it in my glass with some sparkling soda water  (mixture known as 'spritz'), and it's almost like drinking champagne. Tirosh Carmel is very popular as it is considered a 'family wine', suitable even for children.

 Tirosh red  wine

I've often asked myself why is it marketed in a glass bottle and sold at the supermarket in the wine department?  After all, it's different from the other bottles  on the shelf, which have alcohol, and perhaps other additives.  Even in the Wikipedia, it says "wine is an alcoholic drink, typically made from fermented grapes".

                               wines and beers at the supermarket

Well, alcohol is just one factor regarding wine. There are other important factors such as : variety and quality of grapes, fermentation reactions, the whole wine production process, of which I know very little.

Anyway, red wine is said to decrease risk of cardio-vascular disease by lowering blood pressure and cholesterol. That sounds great!  It's due ,however, to the polyphenols (anti- oxidants) in the red grapes, not due to the alcohol.  Alcohol might block them from working effectively.