Israel 2020: Day 8

So awesome going to the Bahai Gardens today in Haifa, Israel. 


Took the train to Haifa and then a taxi ride up this big hill. 


Got out at the top and not sure what to expect. 


We go through security…


And then we see this completely BREATHTAKING view of the Bahai Gardens along with an amazing view of Haifa, the port, and up and down the Mediterranean Sea. 


The view Extended all the way up to the Crusader Castle in Akko. 


The terraced Bahai Gardens were spectacular.  


I’ve never seen anything like this. 


We walked down the terraces some 700 stairs. 


And along the way were fountains, gardens, and more beautiful landscapes and views. 


This is definitely something to see (thank you Hashem for this opportunity). 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Israel 2020: Day 2

So went to Nahariya today near the Labanon border.


Nice shopping strip and gorgeous beach. 


Had a nice cappuccino at Cofix.


Got a new modern Kiddish cup for Shabbat and a washing cup for Netilat Yadayim.


Enjoyed the train ride up and back on the beautiful Mediterranean Sea shore.


Had dinner at Azrieli Mall in Tel Aviv and marvelled at all the shopping and crowds on a Tuesday.

Real contrast between more sleepy resort town, Nahariya and high-tech, bustling city Tel Aviv.  😉


(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Israel 2020: Day 1

So great today to be back in the Holy Land of Israel. 


Every time we come, we can literally see how the country has matured and built up even more since just the short time before. 


Of course, we arrived with a little jet lag but still managed to take a nice walk around the bustling streets of Tel Aviv. 


The restaurants, cafes, shops, theaters, and culture here is awesome. 


I guess the toughest thing is deciding what we want to do each day, but that is all part of the adventure. 


See you tomorrow! 😉


(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Dunkin’ Mugs

I love my new Dunkin’ Coffee Mugs.


Got one in each color: blue and orange. 


Inside the mugs, there is a finger sign “V” (for victory) and it says “Be Awesome”.


These oversized mugs are so happy and I can’t wait to fill ’em up.


And they really do make me ready to “Wake Up” for a brand new day. 😉


(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Visit Back Home

On the way to a family wedding in Monsey.

We stopped back home in Riverdale, NY after 20 years.

Wow, old building still here. 

And the KeyFood supermarket too. 

Had a nice lunch at Kai Fan kosher Chinese food (the Sesame Chicken was great!). 

Went up to my parents old apartment and saw the outlines of where the mezuzah had once stood. 

I wanted to hear their voices through the door and go in to see them again.

It was very emotional, but I felt like their presence was there with us. 

Enjoyed seeing how some (very few) things have changed and all that has otherwise stayed the same 

With seeing my wife’s family, some after many years, it was like I had never not seen them. 

I imagined that this is what dying must be like when you go to the afterlife and there is no time and you see everybody and it’s just like they have always been there. 

That was an amazing realization and feeling for me. 😉

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal) 

I Say Upside Down You Turn Me

I liked this advertisement for WOOW eyewear. 


Like the faces, the colors, the upside down and right-side up orientations. 


Seems cool, hip, with it. 


Happy hippie times. 😉


(Credit Photo: Michelle Blumenthal)

Nature Boy

When I was a kid and I went to the supermarket with my mom, I remember always seeing the “Andy Boy Broccoli” in the produce aisle. 


Of course, I was always curious why Broccoli was called Andy Boy–what boy or any kid for that matter likes to eat broccoli???


And like most things in life, there really wasn’t a good answer except that this company, “Andy Boy” grows and distributes it. 


Anyway, I was always a nature boy feeling most at home and at peace in the countryside. 


I love being in nature, surrounded by G-d’s amazing beauty, and at one with the universe and with G-d.  


In building all our great cities, buildings, and structures, aside from the crowding, pollution, crime and traffic that we have consequently, we have also lost something elementary to our lives with the absence of real nature. 


A park is not a forest.  A pond is not a river.  A plant is a not a lush valley.  A garden is not a farm.  A hill is not a mountain range.  A pet is not a teeming ecosystem of diverse life.  


The city is man made and fake, but nature is from G-d and real. 😉


(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)