Wednesday, February 29, 2012


Some of you know my wonderful friend Jill from
A week ago she came for a surprise visit to Israel flying over the ocean from New York to Tel Aviv with her two young daughters. We spent some joyful days together and enjoyed each others company immensely. She will be back for summer vacation, and we have a lot more plans to do things together.

On the way to my friend Aiva in the Galilee we stopped at the anemone meadows at Minchat Meggido - a lot of rain was beating down on them the previous days and they were over the height of their bloom, but what was left was still very impressive - the wild anemones there, thousands and thousands of them, present themselves in all their variety of colors and hues, white, pink, purple, red... 


We have a herb farm with a huge spice shop in Beitlechem HaGlilit - a big marvelous smelling purchase was made there: spice mixes for rice, special teas, cinnamon, granola... So many choices, hard to decide!
The flea market in Yafo was for another day - of course it could not be missed!
We all had a great and loving time together - which is stored in our memories forever!
Having a coffee break at the flea market - this is my most favorite photo of all!
See you in summer Jill! :-)

Monday, February 27, 2012


The hills of the Jordan Valley are shaped beautifully, some round and soft, others sharp and ragged. They look barren from afar. But they are not bare of vegetation at all. If you leave your car and start getting in touch with them by walking around, like we did this Shabat, they reveal all their little wonders. The flowers are braving the winds and the rocky earth, and are low on the ground. They create islands of colors which mix with the silence in the air, disrupted only here and there with the shriek of a bird of prey.

The valley starts where the Jordan comes out of the Lake of Galilee till to where it flows into the Dead Sea, on a stretch of about 100 kilometers. As you follow it south, it will get more and more arid and become a desert, but further north it is very fertile, and the fields and fruit and palm gardens can be seen from up in the hills. The whole area lies well below sea level, the deepest point is at the Dead Sea.

The land seems peaceful under the wide sky. But if you listen you can hear the whispers of its history and its suffering, and the tales about the many different rulers,  people, cultures, and political disputes over thousands of years - stories are told from Biblical times till modern reality. Physical and spiritual evidence is to be found everywhere. But the land remained true to itself, patient and beautiful, carrying the seeds of flowers, trees and plants in its earth, waiting for the rains to sprout them forward - as it always did...
Photos by Uri Eshkar - click on them for enlargement.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


My son and his loved one adopted three cats from the street near their apartment, and named them after the Star Trek heroes Seven and Leeta. They took them to the Vet to have them vaccinated and treated for worms, and then so far had two of them neutered (the third one is still too small). First, three days ago the bigger one Seven, and yesterday the smaller one, Leeta. It is absolutely amazing how those two kitties care about each other! 
We are so thrilled by watching this dearness and kindness. After Leeta came back from the Vet, still knocked out a bit, Seven, who had already recovered, was caring for her so sweetly and still is. She is snuggling up to her, putting her paws around her, licking her clean, stroking her, staying close to her all the time - it is unbelievable how loving she is and how Leeta is so receptive to it.

My son says, they get back from those two ten times more than what he and his girlfriend had done for them! To see this love and affection makes them feel happy!

Monday, February 20, 2012


reCAPTCHA challenge image

reCAPTCHA challenge image

This was always annoying, but now it is even more than before - you can just not read the words and have to try two or more times to get it right!

Just get rid of it!

Go to your Dashboard

Click on Settings

Click on Comments

Scroll down till you see "Show word verification for comments"

Click "NO"

Save Settings

Saturday, February 18, 2012


with whatever you are going to "fish" this weekend! :-)

Thursday, February 16, 2012


My husband's focus was so much on those pretty two colored yellow red flowers under that tree, that he did not see the rainbow in the first place! Me neither! Only when he stepped back into the car and I checked the photos he had taken on his camera, did we notice the rainbow on the photograph - luckily it was still there and we had a joyful look at the sky!

Photos by Uri Eshkar.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012


There is a difference between Anemones and Poppies. Have a close look!

 Those are anemones.

Those are poppies.



Oh yes, the burning red color is almost the same!

Photos by Uri Eshkar.


This is the time of the year when the Anemones paint whole stretches of the landscape in flaming red. In between some please with other colors, but less - white, purple and with shades of pink.
This song, a homage to the kalaniot, the anemones, the red ones, was written by Nathan Altermann in 1945, and put into music by Moshe Wilensky, and it was first sung by Shoshana Damari, the Yemenite Queen of Hebrew music, and recorded in 1948. It is one of the most played, performed, loved and cherished songs here.

Please listen and enjoy!
The lyrics were translated into English by David Jacobi

The evening comes,
the sunset on the hill burns
I am dreaming and my eyes see:
the proud*, young girl descends to the valley
and it blazes with a fire of anemones.

She'll pick flowers to put in a bundle
and in the paths covered by dew
to Mother she rushes - calling out to her:
look what I brought for you in the basket!

Anemones, anemones
reddish, red-haired
Anemones, anemones
anemones of dew and grace/charm

Sunset on the hill will blaze and go out
but the anemones will always bloom.
Storms will thunder and roar greatly
but the anemones will always bloom.


Years pass, the sunset blazes again
The girl grew, her beauty is endless.
going to the valley with her heart's chosen
and again anemones bloom in it.

Her heart's chosen extends his hands to her
and she's laughing and bedewed
she whispers to him between the kisses
Look what I gathered here in the basket!

The vows of love will be forgotten,
but anemones will always bloom.
For the vows are light as smoke,
but the anemones are always the same.

Years passed, sunset blazes in the hill.
The girl is a grandma already, friends
Her granddaughter goes to the garden
and again anemones bloom in it.

And when the girl calls to her:
"look Grandma what I brought you,"
from laughter and tears her eyes glow
and she remembers a forgotten song melody...

Yes, generations come and pass without end
but each generation has an anemone in a tune.
Happy is the man if between storms and thunder
an anemone bloomed for him, if only just once.

The song was written a long time ago. Nowadays the Kalaniot, the Anemones, are protected and of course are not to be picked and put into baskets! :-)

Photographs taken on our outing to the Galilee last weekend by my husband Uri Eshkar.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


This is the link to the beautiful blog of Bob Bushell, a bird and other wildlife photographer from England. Everyday I am looking forward to his pictures, which is a very pleasant joy. There is a piece of music as an additional present each time too. Check it out, you won't regret it!

And this is a link to a little information about Bob - after reading it you will appreciate his wonderful photographic skills even more and you will realize how brave he is.

For months I am trying to catch a bird with my husbands camera on our excursions, just as a gift for Bob. I am telling you, THAT is not easy at all! They hop around, they fly away, they come back, and you think NOW, and whups, they swirl up into the air again, they hide in bushes and behind tree branches. Taking pictures of those feathered friends efforts a lot of patience.

So last weekend I finally got a shot - not a masterpiece, but really nice, I think. So this is for you Bob - and I thank you so much that you are going out almost everyday to bring us home all those gorgeous photos and that you choose a piece of nice music for us to listen to as well. 

I very much admire and appreciate you Bob - as a master photographer and as a human being! 

This bird is called סיק סק Sik Sak in Hebrew and I think it is a Winged Lapwing.

Sunday, February 12, 2012


Irus haArgaman - איריס הארגמן - Iris atropurpurea - is endemic to the coastal area of Israel. This magnificent flower blooms in February and March. The stalks reach a height up to 40 cm and are crowned with a single large flower head, the size of a medium fist.

The colors of the flowers range in hues of purple, to almost black, sometimes even tending towards orange. Argaman is Hebrew for purple. This is a protected plant. It likes to grow in soil of sand and gravel and can be found even very near to the shore line of the sea near Palmachim and Natanya.

We went for a long weekend to the north of Israel to the Galilee, the Kinnereth, and the Golan Heights. Our first stop on the way was at a small nature reserve off highway number four, near Kadima, where we found the wonderful purple Iris. It was early in the morning, after a night of rain and the remaining drops on some of the flower petals added to their beauty.

I will show more spring flowers and views from our trip in the next post.

Photographs by Uri Eshkar.