Friday, May 16, 2014

Playing Hooky in Jerusalem: A Photo Blog

I spend a lot of (too much) time in my home office. So when DH had a chance to go to Jerusalem on Thursday to eat sushi with a friend who had a coupon for a new sushi place in the shuk, I went along, even though I don't like sushi. Sometimes, it's all about the chavaya - the experience.

We sat at an outdoor table right near the Iraqui shuk. Across from us was some kind of club house for old Israeli men. Inside, there was a bit of friendly gambling going on. Outside, sitting in mismatched chairs that had seen brighter days, was a cavalcade of retired Israelis. The setting was, ahem... quite the opposite of glamorous.  Tucked away in a hidden corner of the shuk where tourists don't venture, it was like looking at a scene in Israel, circa 1955. A most humble setting, an aura of bonhomie and an afternoon of pleasant diversions.

Peek inside the door to see where the games were being played.


Around the corner, we saw more old men, this time playing Shesh Beish. Or what we used to call backgammon in the Old Country.

Two chayalot - female Israeli soldiers, enjoying lunch (and technology) off the beaten path in the shuk.


I cringed at this t-shirt that was for sale, but ultimately had to laugh at it. It says, "I don't need Google. My wife knows everything!"  
A classic Jerusalem alleyway with the requisite image of a random religious man.



If you're into cooking Asian food, this store on Agrippas probably has all the ingredients you'll need.


Of course, not everything sold in Jerusalem is quite kosher.
Israel's equivalent of the "Be Right Back" sign on a locked store front.
We bumped into an open-air flea market where, it became pretty obvious, junk is still junk anywhere in the world. 


Although I did snag a handful of old Israeli telephone tokens (asimonim) and learned that they are decorated on the back with a replica of an old phone dial. How many of you knew that?

What is it with old Israeli men sitting on the street?

They're everywhere, in the most random places.
Here's a picture of some Arab women sitting on a bench, waiting for the Light Rail, under the flag of the Jerusalem municipality. Yeah, definitely an apartheid country.
And everywhere you look...

Israeli flags.
It was an altogether satisfying afternoon playing hooky in Jerusalem.

4 comments:

Varda Meyers Epstein said...

Okay, what did you pay for the asimonim? I saved two :-)

And yes, I knew it was a dial phone design.

I liked the photo of the Haredi guy in the alley. You're good!

holycook said...

And here I was wondering what caption you'd give that (first) picture, and it ended up being a whole blog! Enjoyed!!

Bat Aliyah said...

Varda - Not likely to make you rich. I paid 2 NIS each. Thanks for reading!

SaraK said...

Playing hooky and roaming around Jerusalem is infinitely more fun than playing hooky in NYC was :)
Wish I could do it more often!
Terrific pics, thanks for sharing.