It's an art. There's the arrival in the shuk area. One has to take park the car in the optimum lot. There are two right nearby - 8nis an hour. Park, shop and shlep to car. Repeat.
Agripas is a little bit like Chinatown during the summer - dirty, smelly, busy, people 3 deep on the sidewalk. We left Natan and Akiva at home. Gabe has come along in order to make sure that we buy the right amount of candy and cookies for Shabbat.
First one cases the situation. This involves walking the main covered walkway of the shuk and diving into some of the sidestreets and checking prices. Mangos are running 9.50nis a kilo in the main area but we find some nice ripe ones for 6.50nis on a sidestreet. I price some italian prune plums - my favorite plum, and the guy wants to pick them for me and I don't like what he chose. He tells me to shop elsewhere, and I do. We stop at the "best" salad guy according to Ira's cousin, Mark - Ma'a'danei Tzidkiyahu. We buy some eggplant liver, breaded cauliflower, pickles and a dark, nasty but delicious looking hunk of Jerusalem kugel.
Then it's the bread stop. Fresh, squishy pita. I choose the whole wheat much to Gabe's dismay but I remind him that we had white last week. We buy hallot but opt out of sweet, Jerusalem hallah for a more standard looking one, albeit whole grain and at least and egg hallah as Ira detests the basic water hallah (yes, yes, many of you know that). Za'atar bread and a sort of tomatoey looking bread (just like Damascus bakery but a little breadier) and we're off to the next stop, cookies. Cookies we buy at the healthy bakery where they have nice options in alternative flours and that makes me happy. This week we try a nice looking bread with onions an stock up on date cookies and oatmeal cookies and even a few chocolate chip cookies.
We walk back to the car, stopping at a Russian store with an excellent beer selection. The guy recommends a Russian beer that he says is "mi'u'leh" fabulous. Ira is skeptical but decides to try it. Lastly, we buy sweet wine and grape juice and to stave off complete hunger, excellent, greasy bourekas (very different than the regular type).
Final step after loading up the car. Coffee at Aroma.
Shuk shopping makes me happy.
Shabbat Shalom to all.
8 hours ago