Shalom from Israel and welcome to another In Israel Blog.
We have had a week of exceptionally fine weather and now the spring blossom can be seen all over. As expected the anemones have also made it to Jerusalem and with them some wildlife has surfaced. The Emek HaMatzleva (Valley of the Cross) area is now a beautiful mix of ancient rock & nearly as ancient olive trees and red flowers. Overlooking the view are the modern Knesset and Israel Museum complexes. You can see more pictures of anemones in this amazing green corner of central Jerusalem in our Jerusalem Albums.
We have mentioned the ongoing development of the Jerusalem Light Railway in recent In Israel blogs. The train is now undergoing passenger-less testing. Here is some video taken just by Machane Yehuda market and on Jaffa Road near King George.
Jerusalem is gearing itself up for a more traditional form of transport – on foot. The Jerusalem Marathon (and Half Marathon and 10Km) is scheduled for 25th March. Last Friday Jerusalem also hosted the First Begin Heritage Run. The course started and finished at the Begin Heritage Center, and included some of the route for the marathon. The scenery and history were wonderful, the hills and cobblestones less so! It was also a special experience taking part in a run down Jaffa Road where the runners had to navigate between the tables outside a popular café. I hope that the waitresses got extra large tips to compensate for the danger of serving coffee inside a stampede! See here for a full Begin Heritage Race report and video. The Tel Aviv Marathon (& shorter runs) will be two weeks after Jerusalem. Good luck to all the runners in the Jerusalem & Tel Aviv Marathons.
Jerusalem is planning two events to mark the end of winter – an outdoor ice rink is going to be built in Safra Square from mid March to Mid April. If you prefer a more gastronomic type of entertainment then the Old City will be hosting a Jerusalem Food Festival over the four quarters covering food from the four cultures.
There is also currently a Jerusalem children’s entertainment program taking place in the first couple of weeks of March covering museums, restaurants and a treasure hunt.
Developing Israel Inside Out is a lot of fun and we get to visit some old favorite places in greater depth and also discover some new places. Last week part of the team was invited to tour the Jerusalem Italian Jewish Museum – for some of us a new place and for all of us now firmly on our list of secret and highly recommended places. The still functioning synagogue is stunning, with a long and rich history and there is a small but amazing museum of Italian Jewish Religious Artifacts. We were also privileged to see some of the loving restoration work in the dedicated wood and textile workshops. We will be publishing more details very soon, but when you are next in Jerusalem put this special place on your must do list.
We have been very busy on Israel Inside Out; we have just opened our Jerusalem Food Forum where you are invited to comment on your favorite food places in Jerusalem – we will be expanding our food coverage to other regions very soon.
Finally, our Israel weather update. It looks like spring will be disappearing for a few days, with the weather in Israel turning cold, wet and windy for most of this week. Heavy snow is forecast for the Golan with a chance of sleet in the Jerusalem area. The Kinneret still needs all the water it can get. Jerusalemites know that generally, snow forecasts are much ado about nothing, but, if we get lucky we will publish photos on Israel Inside Out.
Wishing you all a wet and snowy week from Jerusalem!