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Monday, April 28, 2008

The obligatory vacation pics

Even though we only took day-trips and goofed off near home during our Passover vacation, the bylaws still make it quite clear that vacation pictures must be shown in front of friends and neighbors. 

Sorry for any inconvenience, but rules are rules. 

Look at the bright side.  You get to see these on the web from the comfort of your own home.  Once upon a time (say, 1965) you would have been a hostage guest in our family's living-room, eating potato chips and bad onion dip, while my father wrestled with a balky slide projector. 

Feeling pretty lucky right about now, yes?:

One of our day trips was a two-and-a-half hour trek through the Judean Desert down into Wadi Kelt (Nahal Prat in Hebrew).  We took the dogs along and everyone sweated buckets.  Much fun was had letting Yonah wander close to the cliffs and watching Zahava's heart stop.  If memory serves, we put my mother through the same treatment at the Grand Canyon.  Good times:

Prat_view

Next up is a picture of Gilad using a cliff as a convenient backdrop:

Gilad_prat

Ariella had some fun taking arms-length self-portraits... a genre of photograph that is apparently all the rage with the teen glam set:

Ari_glam

Down at the bottom of the Wadi there is a nice cool spring-fed stream flowing into a series of pools.  This is an incredibly welcome reward for anyone stupid enough to hike through the desert to get there.  We all got nice and wet... even the dogs.  This is a shot of Zahava and Lulu relaxing, post dip (Note: those are not Zahava's cancer sticks there on the rock.  She does not now, nor has she ever smoked.):

Lulu_zahava

After I got wet I did what I do at the end of every hike; I took a nap.  Lulu liked the idea and joined me:

Tired_puppy

The next day we took a trip to the ruins of a Nabatean city near Dimona in the Negev Desert where there was a Bedouin festival going on.  [update:  The Sandman, whose lovely family we enjoyed this particular tiyul, points out in the comments that it was a Nabatean festival featuring Bedouins].  For some reason I didn't take very many pictures (or maybe Zahava deleted all the pictures I took of the Belly Dancer), but all I seem to have left is this shot of Yonah playing near one of the stone walls of the ruin:

Yonah_playing

Last up is another picture of Yonah. 

Here's the deal.  When Gilad was about Yonah's age, he wanted desperately to learn how to catch a baseball.  But he was also desperately afraid of getting hit by the hard ball.  My solution was to buy him some mini-catcher's equipment.  Once he was all decked out I was able to chuck balls at him full speed without him being afraid of getting hit.  And sure enough, he's grown up to be an all-star utility infielder (including catcher, of course) in the Israeli Little League.

So a few weeks ago Gili and I were having a catch and Yonah started pestering me to throw him the ball too.  As soon as I lobbed the ball to him he ducked for cover.  I knew it was time to break out the catcher's gear.  Trust me parents... there is no better (or safer) way to teach your kids to catch a baseball without all the flinching and closing their eyes!

So now that you've gotten the whole explanation... here's a picture of Yonah calling for 'the deuce' from his big brother:

Catcher

Well that's about it.  The chips are all gone and only a few smudges of onion dip are left in the bowl.  That wasn't so bad, was it?

[maybe if you ask nicely Zahava will send me one of the belly dancer pics to post]

Bonus Pictures (thanks to my lovely wife who 'found' the missing shots of the belly dancer) For those who are interested, she was Israeli... not Arab.  Oh, and one more thing.  In his comment, The Sandman pointed out that she had lovely eyes.  I'll have to take his word for it as I didn't notice at the time:

Belly_dancer1

Belly_dancer2

 

Posted by David Bogner on April 28, 2008 | Permalink

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Jeez' Louise!! It's not like you don't have my phone number! YOU could have asked directly -- of course, that wouldn't feed into your "poor-beleaguered-husband" shtick as well.... :-P

The pix should be in your in-box. All two of them.

The pictures do not do justice to this woman's dance skills. She was fantastic!

Posted by: zahava | Apr 28, 2008 1:50:54 PM

You know I would Trep, but you'd probably be sent back to the Negev and I'd have to change my name to John Doe.

Ahem! Great post Trep, Nice seeing everone again. :-)

Posted by: Rami | Apr 28, 2008 2:52:26 PM

I'm one of those weird ones who actually likes looking at other people's vacation pics. (Not with a slide projector, because I like to be in control of the pace). These were great. I'll have to remember these places for the future.

I caught a glimpse of you in the old city on Chol Hamoed. I wanted to backtrack to say hello, but my daughter was mortified. ("A blogger????" She exclaimed in horror. "You want to go say hello to someone you don't EVEN KNOW????" "Not just any blogger," I replied, "I'll have you know he is Number 850 in the blogosphere".

She was QUITE impressed.

Posted by: Baila | Apr 28, 2008 3:08:59 PM

First of all, Zahava, with all do respect, all husbands are poor and beleaguered, that's part of the gig. And it doesn't matter how wonderful our spouses are (that last sentence was sponsored by the spineless husbands society).
Second, the belly dancer was excellent, but what made her exceptional IMHO were her seductive eyes.
Third, Trep, it was a Nabatean festival played by bedouins.

Posted by: QuietusLeo | Apr 28, 2008 3:10:37 PM

zahava... But it's so much more fun this way. :-)

Rami... No, you're safe.

Baila... You saw us and didn't say hello?! Insulted! :-)

QuietusLeo... First of all, it's 'due' not do (but I guess we'll let that pass given that you're Israeli). Second, the belly dancer had eyes? Weird, I didn't notice. ;-) And third, when it comes to desert dwelling tribes I'm a bit of a cultural ignoramus so excuse me. Oh, and I really should have pointed out that we spent the day with you and your lovely family. In fact, I think I'll go point it out right now!

Posted by: treppenwitz | Apr 28, 2008 3:25:39 PM

"
a Nabatean city near Dimona in the Negev Desert where there was a Bedouin festival going on.
"

Not by any chance by the name of Mamshit?

Posted by: asher | Apr 28, 2008 3:53:15 PM

and what is Jordan schlepping around on her back?

Posted by: asher | Apr 28, 2008 3:55:03 PM

Why, yes! It was Mamshit!

That is a Wolf Pack® Jordan is schlepping around on her back. http://www.wolfpacks.com/

Posted by: zahava | Apr 28, 2008 4:13:15 PM

That's the first belly dancer I've seen wearing so much clothing. : )

And I can totally relate to the heart stopping moments of getting to close to the cliff's edges. I know I am really going to become one of those annoyingly micro-managers watching my kids hiking up and down the trail at Masada.

Btw, great idea for learning baseball. Do you think I would look too funny wearing it in the outfield. Every time I think I want to join a softball team and go to a practice, I always freak out if a flyball comes in my direction.

Posted by: jaime | Apr 28, 2008 4:52:15 PM

That looks like fun. BTW, I have about 600 slides that I took on my first trip to Israel. They're stored along with that bulky slide projector at my parent's house.

I took great pleasure in watching my kids try and figure out what the projector was for and why we used to use them.

Posted by: Jack | Apr 28, 2008 5:27:05 PM

Love the pics, glad to see you had a good moed despite the heat. Just one question, I've known Zahava for a really long time, and know full well she doesn't smoke, so why does it look like her hand is on a pack of cigarettes???

Posted by: Rachel | Apr 28, 2008 5:30:15 PM

Love the pics, glad to see you had a good moed despite the heat. Just one question, I've known Zahava for a really long time, and know full well she doesn't smoke, so why does it look like her hand is on a pack of cigarettes???

Posted by: Rachel | Apr 28, 2008 5:31:58 PM

Terrific pics! Nice to see the family; you haven't posted any photos in quite some time!

Posted by: SaraK | Apr 28, 2008 5:56:02 PM

Here are my Pesach vacation photos:

http://joesettler.blogspot.com/2008/04/tzidkiyahus-cave-and-shaar-shchem.html

Posted by: JoeSettler | Apr 28, 2008 6:06:18 PM

Rachel: you know as I was color adjusting the images I noticed the unfortunate placement of that pack of cigarettes and wondered who would notice! For the record: THEY ARE NOT MINE. [vile, disgusting, cancer sticks... feh!]

Posted by: zahava | Apr 28, 2008 6:10:41 PM

Do? ah, yes, due!. I don't usually make spelling mistakes, even in English. It must be the deadly typo-itis brought on by being on call both at work and at home.
I must say that the Sandfamily greatly enjoyed spending the day with the von Trepp family.

Posted by: QuietusLeo | Apr 28, 2008 6:49:52 PM

Yes, the belly dancer had eyes, byooooteeful eyes. Very expressive. I barely noticed the sack she was wearing.

Posted by: QuietusLeo | Apr 28, 2008 6:51:46 PM

BTW, that's my left boot in the belly dancer pics. Fascinating, yes?

Posted by: QuietusLeo | Apr 28, 2008 7:08:25 PM

Tee, hee! And my sandals and toes to the left of your left boot! :-)

Not to sound too mutual-adoration-club-ish and all, but we all enjoyed ourselves immensely too! Looking forward to future opportunities to get to know you all better!

Posted by: zahava | Apr 28, 2008 7:38:58 PM

Hi Trep,

Delurking again to say that I was also at Mamshit with my family, on the first day of Hol Hamoed. We liked the belly dancer too, and when Shaul (my 3 yo) came in and saw the pics he immediately announced "We were there yesterday!"

Wadi Qelt is still a bit in the future for us, though - can't trust Shaul either with going the distance or with not falling off the track yet.

I would guess that we don't agree on very many things politically, but nothing can bring people together like a good tiyul or visit to an archaeological site. If you haven't been yet, I highly, highly reccommend Bet Shean (although maybe wait for the autumn to go there).

Posted by: Leigh | Apr 28, 2008 8:30:44 PM

She was very modestly dressed for a belly dancer. I guess she's not a graduate of the Navel Academy.

:)

Posted by: Karl Newman | Apr 28, 2008 9:18:02 PM

"She was very modestly dressed for a belly dancer. I guess she's not a graduate of the Navel Academy."
Karl, you're very punny. ;-P
Zahava - what's wrong with the mutual admiration society, especially in this country, in which firgun is so lacking?

Posted by: QuietusLeo | Apr 28, 2008 11:38:35 PM

Thanks! I'm just trying to be....hip. :)

Posted by: Karl Newman | Apr 29, 2008 1:19:26 AM

Yeah, I was thinkin' this must be how a frum belly dancer dresses. :)

And to think that I've been accused of a lack of tzniut (modesty) and of committing a chillul hashem (desecration of G-d's name) because I choreographed a few dances to some Jewish rock music (by your old Shlock Rock buddies Lenny Solomon and Mark Skier [aka PsychoToddler], and by Izzy Botnick, of Mark's old band Kabbalah) and posted them on YouTube. I can imagine what my, um, kind commenters would have to say about a belly dancer.

Posted by: Shira Salamone | Apr 29, 2008 5:39:28 AM

Yeah, I was thinkin' this must be how a frum belly dancer dresses. :)

And to think that I've been accused of a lack of tzniut (modesty) and of committing a chillul hashem (desecration of G-d's name) because I choreographed a few dances to some Jewish rock music (by your old Shlock Rock buddies Lenny Solomon and Mark Skier [aka PsychoToddler], and by Izzy Botnick, of Mark's old band Kabbalah) and posted them on YouTube. I can imagine what my, um, kind commenters would have to say about a belly dancer.

Posted by: Shira Salamone | Apr 29, 2008 5:42:18 AM

asher... Yes, that's it. And Jordan is wearing a WolfPack bag. That way she can carry her own food and water (not to mention bags for cleaning up after her).

jaime... I'll have to defer to your superior knowledge of belly dancer attire. :-) actually, this may sound funny, but her dancing was actually much more provocative because of her relatively modest attire. Strange, no?

Jack... Funny how they never question why we say 'dial' when we talk about calling someone on the phone. :-)

Rachel... No, some miscreant left his/her cigarettes on the rock while wading in the water. Zahava hasn't picked up that particular habit here.

SaraK... When are you coming for another visit? Why settle for pictures?

JoeSettler... Shameless! :-) But I'm glad you linked. I'm sure a lot of people were unaware of the tourist stuff over by the Damascus gate.

QuietusLeo... Eyes huh? So that's your story and you're sticking with it? ;-)

Leigh... You should know that you can drive to the bottom of Wadi Qelt and walk a few meters to the water and picnic areas. There is even a small concession stand there selling ice cream and drinks. Never too early for the kids to go there.

Karl Newman... [groan]

Shira Salamone... My guess is that she dressed in such a way as to appeal to the largest (or at least offend the smallest) audience. Most Haredim wouldn't sit and watch if she was wearing a Burka, but there were a couple of other modern ortho couples who didn't seem to mind. Look I figure that so long as my wife was there and the dancer wasn't giving lap dances... what's the harm? :-)

Posted by: treppenwitz | Apr 29, 2008 10:54:08 AM

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