Thursday, January 31, 2008

Jerusalem Snow '08

This is the second morning of waking up to snow in Jerusalem. No work, no transportation, no hot water from solar batteries, since they are blanketed with the chilling snow blanket, which counteracts even the heating with the built-in electrical element.

The lonely snowman, with buttons of what could be Pri-Gat juice bottles, surrounded with police barriers never used and left over from the Bush visit, note the Release Pollard campaign stickers:

Here is the picture of the aquarium from a previous post on this pretty morning:

And walking onto the Herzl Avenue, one can see the Yad Sarah headquarters on the left,

to the right of the traffic light post is the intentionally bent pylon for the supposedly to be famous Calatrava bridge (to carry the entirely impractical light rail trains) still together with an idle crane,
closer to the foreground, immediately to the left of the traffic light pole is the abstract sculpture, a gift from some city, the sculpture used to sit quarter of a mile away on top of Mt. Herzl,
and further to the right in the background is the former Hilton Plaza, now Crowne Plaza, or a variant on the name.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Secret election campaigns in Jerusalem

A casual walk along the Herzl Avenue yields intriguing discoveries of what must be a shadow, alternative, anarchistic even(?) movements roiling amidst the tempestuous political scene of Jerusalem, the city divided and to be divided by any influential politician, and along any imaginable opinion lines. We are not talking about Kadima, Mafdal, Likud, Hadash, UTJ, Labor, United Arab Front, the Organization To Kill Zionist Entity, Fateh, Hamas, Hizbullah, PFLP, The Al-Aqsah Martyrs.

Since the shadow-anarchist-underground movements seem to avoid standard commercial methods of advertizing, they seem to resort to the ubiquitous graffiti ( more here), especially on concrete blocks that the city likes to use to hold up utility poles (since it saves them man-hours needed to drill, dig and fill for the poles). These are just samples:

Along the same avenue, the list of contractors for the Jerusalem's Light Rail transformer station by the Shaarey Zedek Hospital is printed up as a mixture of political and commercial advertizing, unsurpassed exponent of political cronyism and bid rigging(? - when common sense suggests a trolley bus system, a few street cars serving along the only thoroughfare is a far cry from moving public through traffic jams):

Keep in touch for the impending results of our election campaign research.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Off The Beaten Track in Beit Vegan

Beit Vegan might appear a s a stodgy and boring community of Jerusalem, but there is Pinchas Amitai, Israel's expert on infectious diseases and insects that transmit them. I discovered him when out for a walk on the Achida street while suffering from an unusual mosquito bite. Seeing this mosquito on the side of the house I knew this was the greatest helpful coincidence.

Pinchas is Israel's pioneer on getting the country rid of malaria. His house is surrounded by hundreds of original and unusual plants and trees, the names of which he knows by heart.

Walking along Beit Vegan street, i spotted this famous aquarium installed by the ground-floor resident for public enjoyment:

It is always nice to discover nice little things like these in this austere, beaten-down city, awaiting the visit by GW Bush, who sees the city as Olmert's bargaining chip.