tip of the hat, wag of the finger: tel aviv

It has been a while, I have to admit before I have done a proper tip of the hat, wag of the finger edition. I am a couple trips behind now so I figured now is a perfect time as any. For those of you who don’t know I’m stealing this idea from Stephen Colbert and heres is the break down a tip of the hat is like I bow down to you and you’re pretty damn awesome. Wag of the finger is well just pretend it’s your mom wagging your finger at you for being naughty and if you don’t change your behaviour she’s about the call the manager (a threat I took very seriously as a child). If I change the game and add in my own taste of shame or congrats just go with it okay? Rules clear? Hope so cause I’m continuing anyway.

Let’s start off on a good note, from the moment I stepped out of the airport I have to say that the weather in Israel was absolutely perfect. The sun was shining but not burning into our skin, rather it was kissing it just so freckles came out to play and my hair brightened with glee. We were able to walk shoeless in sand without scalding our toes and jump into the sea whilst keeping our breath. By night the wind could chill your skin but never would it transform your breath to smoke that lingered in the air. Tip of the hat Mother Nature, thank you for allowing some girls from the north country experience a bit of an Indian summer.

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The beaches provided an array of entertainment as we watched eccentric humans come to life on the beach. At times there were people dancing and jiving with the sea right next to a couple taking wedding pictures, in fact there were A LOT of wedding pictures happening. Laying on the beach you would hear the constant thud of paddle ball in-between the tide flirting with the sand praying that Fido doesn’t trample over you leaving you coated in sand.

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Another quick tip of the hat to the people of Tel Aviv (Israel, really). You all were so incredibly lovely. I guess I should have known though, because even before our trip parents at school were making hand drawn maps equipped with the best food spots in town, streets you can’t miss and sites we must see. People were always offering their help and you know sometimes, yes they wanted us to go to their shop (where they would give us tea and coffee as we looked) but a good majority of the time they genuinely wanted to ensure we were finding everything just fine, maybe they were just bored… who knows?

I do have to admit though, there is a bit of tisk, tisk here too. Although the majority of people were quite lovely there were of course the few that were a bit raunchy. Yes, yes we get it we are walking around on a beach, yeah yeah we look different but need we be so obvious about it? Your grandma is looking over the rims of her glasses and shaming you a bit every time you do that…

On another note Tel Aviv’s nightlife though is outstanding the streets starts buzzing with people throbbing in and out of speakeasies and dives, or lining up to slip down into the underground scene. Snaps to you, for having an array of options from bars that took on a sputnik theme and transforming rooms to swanky speakeasy overlooking the waltz of Rothschild. I did find my eyes rolling because hardly any proper pub opens until ten, and sometimes a girl just wants to have a beer.

A huge round of applause ought to be directed towards Tel Aviv’s food options. We had a legendary breakfast cafe matched with mouth-watering cuisine during the entirety of our stay. We ate at restaurants tucked behind dilapidated buildings, cafes that hugged the corner of a disappearing walkway and in hipster hideouts framed in neon lights and never left disappointed.

However I do have to say that I need to throw some shade at the absolutely absurdity that exists in Tel Aviv’s streets. Walking down a sidewalk one may find themselves jubilantly trotting along and then in an instant they are thrust out and tossed into the middle of traffic because the sidewalk just ended. In the middle of the street. No warning. No crossing to the other side, just good luck have it and hope you survive. I mean I get that streets wind, twist and tangle, especially in hilly areas and certainly in my mind but sidewalks ending? It is as if Shel Silverstein wrote “Where the Sidewalk Ends” in Tel Aviv, for Tel Aviv.

I am about to get nerdy with you real quick so just hold on tight because in the poem “Where the Sidewalk Ends”, author Shel Silverstein is essentially alluding that there is a mystical place that children know of where the sidewalk ends, a place of peppermint wind, asphalt flowers, you know a type of place that presents a childlike state of innocence. A place where people can exist while fundamentally looking at the world in different way. A place where one can return to the beginning, enjoy the sunshine and soak in the surrounding peace. Even if it lasts only for a second, there is a lot of beauty that can be found in the ephemeral.

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