Quiet streets

Quiet streets of Tel Aviv

From sundown on Friday until sundown yesterday, it was Yom Kippur, a day of atonement. Cars and public transportation were forbidden on the streets and everything was closed – boats were forbidden on the water and all flights suspended. It was great – the streets were instead sprinkled with families out walking, kids playing and folks riding their bikes (John and I included). We could actually hear the ocean waves and birds outside – so peaceful!

Monday night, we had dinner at Whitehall with our friend and co-worker Alon. We had a good meal and it was fun to get to know him better.

Thursday night was book club at our house. It was a big book, which translated into a small crowd, but a good discussion all the same.

One thing that embassies around the world do is to attend trials for Americans who are on trial, or trials for American victims. Tuesday, I attended a session in Jerusalem for Kristine Luken, an American woman who was brutally murdered in Israel while she and her friend/tour guide were out hiking. It was a very moving experience to meet her brother and her friend who survived the attack. It was a small courtroom, and one of the accused was in the courtroom about 10 feet from me (his two co-defendants have already pleaded guilty). Shiver.

After the trial, we attended a memorial service for Kristine and three other people who had died last year, either by a terrorist attack or serving Israel in the army. It was a beautiful venue, high on a hill in the countryside. Our Ambassador, among others, spoke.

Hear the waves

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