Our Rig

Our Rig

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Hanukkah 2014

These days (very close to Xmass) we celebrate Hanukkah ,a family Festival of lights.

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First Candle with the Shamash lightened on an old Candelabra originally used with oil.

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4 Candles lightened on the 4th day of Hanukkah.


Known as the Festival of Lights, Feast of Dedication, is an eight-day Jewish holiday commemorating the rededication of the Holy Temple (the Second Temple) in Jerusalem at the time of the Maccabean Revolt against the Seleucid Empire of the 2nd century BCE. Hanukkah is observed for eight nights and days, starting on the 25th day of Kislev according to the Hebrew calendar, which may occur at any time from late November to late December in the Gregorian calendar.

The festival is observed by the kindling of the lights of a unique candelabrum, the nine-branched menorah or Hanukah, one additional light on each night of the holiday, progressing to eight on the final night. The typical menorah consists of eight branches with an additional visually distinct branch. The extra light is called a Shamash and is given a distinct location, usually above or below the rest. The purpose of the Shamash is to have a light available for practical use, as using the Hanukkah lights themselves for purposes other than publicizing and meditating upon Hanukkah is forbidden.[2]

Other Hanukkah festivities include playing dreidel and eating oil based foods such as doughnuts and latkes.

More information can be found on http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hanukkah

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Our grand Daughter almost one year old and her first Candle.

Saturday, December 13, 2014


    The Old city of Acre is one of the fascinating old cities in Israel. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Rich in history, spanning from the Greek periods, this ancient city has fascinating points of interest as well as a charming location along the Sea. Acre is well known as one of the main Crusaders cities

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   Acre/Akko was inhabited from the Bronze age to the Roman period in a tell (mound) east of the old city, on the north bank of the Na'aman river.  It was abandoned at the Hellenistic/Roman period.  (See a detailed review of Tell Akko - the  biblical site of Akko).

  • Current location

   The Romans built a breakwater and expanded the harbour at the present location of the harbour.

At the Arab period the old city was built at the present location, later fortified by the Crusaders. The following list shows a long chain of conquests and ruling empires over thousands of years.

The market in the old city is full of colors ,great smells and interesting place to walk and watch the action as the merchants are trying to sell their merchandise to the potential byers.P1100772P1100773P1100774P1100771P1100775P1100776P1100777

The alleys are narrow and with good imagination you can feel the how people lived here many years ago.


The port is one of the most important parts of the old part of the city,fisherman come and go with fresh fish delivering them directly to the market place,boat rides can be taken just for 10IL (2.5US$) and if you have a strong stomach he will take you beyond the the harbour to the open sea.


The city ancient walls ,the light house can be seen from every angle and so are some Mosque and Churches ,Muslims,Christians and Jews enjoy together what the city offers.


Years ago when people traveled with camels they would stop for the night in the HAN, where they can rest ,feed the animals and continue the journey in the next day


The old city is small and can be seen easily in one day including having a good fresh meal in a local restaurant facing the Mediterranean sea even in the winter-like we did today.


Thursday, November 20, 2014

Day trip to Sefat area Israel

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Located at an elevation of 900 metres (2,953 ft), Sefat is the highest city in the Galilee and in Israel.Due to its high elevation, Sefat experiences warm summers and cold, often snowy, winters.Since the 16th century, Safed has been considered one of Judaism's Four Holy Cities, along with Jerusalem, Hebron and Tiberias; since that time, the city has remained a center of Kabbalah, also known as Jewish mysticism.

Due to its mild climate and scenic views, Safed is a popular holiday resort frequented by Israelis and foreign visitors.

Our only lake-kinneret can be seen from the high points of the city-a magnificent sight in a clear day.

We started our trip by visiting Mount Meron with an overlook to  fantastic views ,the weather in Mid November is just perfect , the Pelicans agreed and gave us an incredible airshow while using the hot air to glide.


There is not a drop of rain in Israel during the summer months (easy for the weather people…) but some rain in November have awaken few flowers to pop out from the grounds and give the place some nice colors.

Tzfat   Tzfat

North of country is full of ancient Synagogues and each one has his own story,in this case we visited Nevoraya village and the remains of the Synagogue near it. The Synagogue was small suggesting that the number of people living close by was small.


Tzfat Tzfat Tzfat

After our guide has talked about the era and the significance of the place we continued to Sefat to have lunch and tour the old quarters.


50% of the population in Sefat are Orthodox Jews ,and as you can see most have more children than the non Orthodox people…..3 in the basket and two bigger kids…I did not see the wife,she might be pregnant again…


The old part of the city is very nice ,full of beautiful narrow alleys with inviting shops,some with great views too,it reminds part of old Jerusalem.





On top of strolling through these alleys enjoying authentic food and drinks there are few beautiful Synagogues to visit,each one with its story and a place to wash hands.

In one Synagogue there is a bullet hole from a shot in 1948 ,if the prayer did not bow at that moment during his pray it would have hit the back of his head,how lucky he was to do his pray with a full heart… and meaning…



Here is a peek into a closed yard of this house, all the walls are made from thick stones that helps to keep the place cool in the summer and warm in the winter (it snows up here…but in mid November it is still warm)



Before leaving this unique city we experienced a beautiful sunset,a nice ending to a very nice day.



The locals say “we have everything we need but need more tourists”-So do plan a visit to Zefat on you next visit to Israel

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Harvesting Olives in Hurfish

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Hurfish is a city in Northern Israel close to the Lebanese boarder ,Lebanon can be easily  seen from a high point of the city.

Horfesh-Olive Harvest

The boarder is just beyond the hills.

Most of the population is from Druze religion they are loyal to the country they live in ,speak Arabic and Hebrew ,In 2012, there were 130,600 Druze living in the country. In 1957, the Israeli government designated the Druze a distinct ethnic community at the request of its communal leaders. The Druze are Arabic-speaking citizens of Israel who serve in the Israel Defense Forces. Members of the community have attained top positions in Israeli politics and public service. They live mainly in the north of the country.

We were meet by Sheik Jamal and Farag that took the time to show us the around while the main thing at this time of the year was harvesting olives and producing fresh good olive oil.

Horfesh-Olive Harvest

Horfesh-Olive Harvest Horfesh-Olive Harvest

Horfesh-Olive Harvest

The hospitality of the Druze people is very known all over the country ,while we were harvesting the Druze women prepared strong coffee and sweet cookies ,but did not allow us to take their pictures and  stayed in the background as a sign of  modesty .

Horfesh-Olive Harvest   Horfesh-Olive Harvest

After harvesting for an whole hour we were served on the ground near the olive trees in the tradition way this great strong coffee and the delicious cookies.

Jamal was very proud to show us the old Olive Grove where some olive trees were 400-600 years old….

Horfesh-Olive Harvest

Horfesh-Olive Harvest        Horfesh-Olive HarvestHorfesh-Olive Harvest         Horfesh-Olive Harvest

The next step was visiting the place where olives are cleaned ,crashed and olive oil is produced.

Ones that own olive groves bring their olives after harvest to the place and pay for the process only, others that have no groves come to buy ready olive oil from the place,the oil here is pure and much better than the one sold in bottles in the supermarkets.

Horfesh-Olive Harvest

Once the olives were crushed with this instrument but today it is a total different story.

Horfesh-Olive Harvest Horfesh-Olive HarvestHorfesh-Olive Harvest  Horfesh-Olive Harvest

Olives are loaded into the pan,they travel up the convert,get washed,crushed,and pure oil is coming out from the other end.

Horfesh-Olive Harvest

We bought some fresh tasty olive oil and continued to the Sheik's house for some more refreshments that included Druze thin pita with white cheese and olive oil .This time we also meet his son and his wife from a distance.

Here we said thanks and goodbye to the Sheik Jamal and took a tour of this beautiful city nestled in the North Region Mountains.  

Our first stop was at the one of the spirit Druze leader’s shrine,located on the top of the mountain facing the Lebanese boarder.

Horfesh-Olive Harvest Horfesh-Olive Harvest

To enter the place we had to be dressed modestly and barefooted.

Horfesh-Olive Harvest Horfesh-Olive Harvest

Then we strolled through the narrow clean alleys in the oldest part of the city watching with concern how the cars drive through them sometimes folding the the side mirrors to be able to pass, some of the alleys allow 2 way traffic……

Horfesh-Olive HarvestHorfesh-Olive HarvestHorfesh-Olive HarvestHorfesh-Olive Harvest

Horfesh-Olive Harvest

This fantastic day ended at Merav’s house where we had more great food,the whole event was planned by her and she made sure we were meet and treated right all the way….THANK you Merav,Jamal and Farag for this experience, it sure looks like a beginning of a life time friendship.