Sunday, November 26, 2006

Daily Candy

Went to Tel Aviv today. Took cousin Karen and Jessica. Aim - walk, eat, shop and check out what's up in TA. Came down the hill and took off our jackets - the weather is just so much balmier. Got out in Neve Tzekek - a hip (of course), gentrified neighborhood that was, I believe, one of the first neighborhoods built outside Old Yaffo in the late '20's. It fell on hard times, then the artists moved in and then...of course, always follow the artists, it began to attract attention. Gradually buildings were restored, cafes appeared, artists married, babies were born, strollers on the streets, real estate prices throught the roof - you know the drill.

We sat in a cafe. Good bread, salads to dip and share - we dipped, we shared, we baked in the sun. Walked and investigated. Clothing is alot more interesting in TA where there is less of a desire to cater to the more provincial and conservative tastes of Jerusalemites. Good accessories, interesting fabrics, trendy cuts - fun was had by all. We sniffed out jewelry shops, walked thru the main plaza of the Suzanne Dalal Center -a local arts and performance place, and admired pottery, the local mishmash of architecture, ranging from what is generally called the "Eclectic Style," which accounts for much of TA architecture (that is to say, that which isn't Bauhaus and which isn't a takeoff on Bauhaus or what isn't just an ugly old concrete building), a mix of Europeanesque/Mediterannean looking buildings.

We got back into the car and went to a new, developing neighborhood that was vastly appealing called "Shechunat Khashmal" or something like that but it's late and I'm not going to check with Jess right now. Regardless, the name has the word khasmal in it from light as it was a neighborhood with lots of electricians - why? I don't remember but will let you know. It reminded me of Smith Street 10 years ago, when Refinery first appeared and Patois - when there were still rosary shops and old bodegas and the grit was still apparent. Sigh. We checked out some really great places - interesting costume jewelry, hip clothing, edgy accesories and finished up with some coffee. All good fodder for Jess and I and our in development business of apprising travelers and locals of where to shop and what to buy and most importantly, what to eat. We'll keep you posted.

We drove cousin Karen to my sister in law Barbara's office in Petach Tikva, hugged her and thanked her for coming and sent her to to the hands of my brother and sister for her final 30 hours of her trip. It was great to have her here.

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