Sunday, February 21, 2010

Swirling Thoughts #115 - More little known facts on the ground

Everything in Israel has perfume. Even the baby wipes that are labeled ‘perfume-free’ have perfume.

There is nothing more refreshing after a morning run than kumquats. All the more so when you can pick and eat them off your tree.

It is perfectly normal for Israeli school children to be given candy by their teacher. It is also normal for them to be given sugar cubes in lieu of candy.

Today’s sale item was the meat known as Number 5
Sale of the Yom – The makolet has a cute sale schedule where certain items are on sale Sunday, others Monday, still others Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Except that the sign lists the items according to the yom - Alef, Bet, Gimmel, etc. (Sunday, Yom Rishon, is Alef). And while I’m certain the sign is posted throughout the store, I only notice it once I’m at the register. So once I’ve counted on my fingers to figure out which day we’re on, cross referenced with the sign to see what’s actually on sale this day, gauged if I can run and grab the sale item before the baby starts crying, and surveyed the mood of the people in line behind me, I usually pass on the sale. But if I see a friend as I’m leaving, I’ll be sure to give a heads up. “Yom Bet – sale on yirakot (vegetables)!”

Facts about the ground
The kids have been having earthquake drills in school. At first I thought they were really rocket drills – that the school didn’t want to scare them. I don’t recall ever hearing about an earthquake in Israel and when Becky got scared about the earthquake in Haiti, I assured her there could be no earthquake here because we don’t live anywhere near tectonic plates…

Standing atop the meeting point of two tectonic plates on my tiyul the very next day, I learned all about the Syrian African Rift. Later, I Googled ‘earthquake in Israel’ and came up with this headline:
Israel Is Due, and Ill Prepared, for Major Earthquake

Ignorance is truly bliss.


  1. Just so you should know:

    a) Israelis don't sugar coat anything - not even for the kids. When there will be a rocket drill - they will tell the four year olds. Only the candy is sugar coated here. Oh, and the juice.

    b) We had an earthquake here a few years ago on Friday night - most people slept through it - some people fell off the couch and woke up.

  2. so are we off the hook for the next 80 years?