Getting to know you

Last Sunday was an absolutely gorgeous day in Tel Aviv. John and I went with our neighbors Bill and Diane to breakfast at Benedict’s, where we had another wonderful meal.

Afterwards, I just couldn’t stand the thought of staying inside on such a pretty day, so I set off for a neat little neighborhood not too far from the apartment, called Neve Tzedek (which I think translates as “oasis of justice” or something like that). It was one of the original neighborhoods of Tel Aviv and has been revitalized and yuppified. Lots of neat restaurants, coffee shops, and upscale jewelry and clothing stores. There’s not a lot of street traffic there, so it was peaceful, too. I thoroughly enjoyed mosying along, going from shop to shop.

We watched a great movie last weekend, “Winter’s Bone.” We didn’t know when we watched it that it would be nominated for an Oscar for Best Picture, but it was really good (if you like sort of creepy movies about people making meth in the Ozarks).

Yesterday at work, we had a mini happy hour in the office to announce winners of Extra Mile awards. I got one for working on a Sunday in December to get some emergency visas printed. It was nice of my bosses to give the award to me.

On Thursday, there was an Embassy-wide awards ceremony, held in a local hotel’s ballroom (because we don’t have a space big enough at the Embassy). It was fun to see folks get rewarded for good work, like our American Citizens Services group who helped with the flotilla incident last May.

John took me out for a nice dinner at Whitehall on Wednesday night. We had stayed late with our manager, watching a webinar on writing good evaluations. Ours will be coming up soon.

I stayed a bit late on Thursday to print emergency visas for a newborn and his family who were heading ┬áto the U.S. for emergency surgery for the baby. Like the case I worked on in December, it’s nice to know that you can help in a small way.

If anyone wants recipes from last week’s baking trip to Nazareth, I added a link to this page, or click here.

Last night as I was putzing around the kitchen, I realized that I have three things that I use constantly: a wooden spoon and a cutting board that Jack Muse (Ann’s dad) made for me. Another is a bowl that my college pottery teacher Mr. Hawes was going to throw away and I rescued. I love the utility of these things, plus I love the memories they invoke.

Bowl, spoon and cutting board

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