israel, part one

haifa, jerusalem, the dead sea, tzfat, the negev, the galilee

the funniest thing happened this week! i got on a plane all sweaty and smelly from the thick israeli summertime and 24 hours later, got off in grand forks, shivering because suddenly i was in the center of fall. it's like i had traveled through time, so consider me a regular marty mcfly.

on my first morning home, i woke up right in time to hear macaroni sing his cockadoodledoo. what a sound!! i imagine it's kind of like hearing your human kid talk for the first time. i piled on a blanket and scurried into the kitchen to brew coffee from a little instant packet that's been hiding in my suitcase since the first kibbutz of my trip (and thank goodness it was there, apparently eggboy was too busy with harvest to replenish our coffee beans while i was gone). i sprinkled it with hawaij and then left it to cool while i ran outside to say hello to macaroni and yank some onions from the ground for my morning salad. oh man it was cold! two weeks in 110º will really make you forget what 60º feels like.

and then in the fall morning light, over salad and tahini and coffee laced halva and hawaij laced coffee, i unpacked and repacked all of my most favorite memories from the past two weeks into imaginary little jars that i will keep forever and ever:

the dash to the tzfat lahoh man, and his hotter than hot zhoug,

a successful (painless!!!) dip in the dead sea,

chili halva, nougat halva, stringy halva, nutella halva...

a rugelach threesome in the middle of mahane yehuda,

the hummus to end all hummuses, in haifa, with a hardboiled egg and a pool of magic tahini,

asaf avidan singing that one day, baby we'll be old, while we snaked through the desert and into an area that was so close to the border, my phone thought we were in jordan,

riding a camel named monica,

my first ever bites of kubbeh, 

a speakeasy in jerusalem,

40 new friends...

i could go on and on, but i'm saving some for my tel aviv post! and i've still got to unpack and find places for the pounds of halva and tahini that almost made my suitcase overweight. *almost* (and if it was, you know i would have chugged that tahini cognac-style so it wouldn't go to waste.)


thanks so much to israel experts for sponsoring this post! a majority of these past few weeks was spent as a staff member for israel experts' culinary themed taglit birthright trip. it was the same one i attended as a participant two years ago and i loved it! if you're interested in applying for this trip, you can find out more information here. registration opens september 8th, but pre-registration has already begun, so you can begin your process here with the referral code mynameisyeh33 and israel experts will contact you to choose a trip option. questions can be directed to: or 1-800-218-9851!