Sunday, March 31, 2013

Machane Yehuda

On Friday we visited Machane Yehuda, Jerusalem's food market. Being food growers and market sellers and goers ourselves, you can imagine how excited we were. 

Machane Yehuda is made up of about 250 stalls selling seasonal fruit and veg, eggs, cheese, seeds, spices, nuts, meat, fish, baked goods, jewelery and textiles. 

The atmosphere is electric with shoppers choosing and buying, sellers handing out samples, weighing, socialising and SPRUIKING!! Spruiking is like a competitive sport at the market. Each stall holder shouting out, one after another, getting louder and louder and louder until the noise is deafening. I caught my girls walking along with their hands over their ears more than once.

The varieties! The smells! The personalities! The foods I've never seen before and have no idea what they are. The lack of sterile health regulations governing stall holders. The dude above was smoking that cigar while filleting fish and serving customers and no one seemed to notice! 

And there was masses of new season's garlic grown in the desert. How gorgeous is that wreath. I'm going to have to have a go at making one of them next season I think.

There was fun new fruit to try, like pomellos and cups filled with pomegranate seeds.

And vintage cigarette displays!! 

Can you imagine cigarettes for sale at one of our farmer's markets?!?

And see those roll ups in the middle of that display? They are dried apricot and I have been dreaming of them for 20 years. They don't taste anything like the roll ups we make or buy back home. They are absolutely delicious. I used to buy one every time I caught a bus from Jerusalem to Tel Aviv way back then. And slowly tear little bits off and nibble them. I could make one last the entire one hour's drive. My girls aren't so patient, the one we bought at market was gobbled up less that five minutes after it was unwrapped.

The hardest part of our visit to Machane Yehuda was holding ourselves back from buying everything. EVERYTHING!! Somebody mentioned that this trip will be a 5kg trip, but it could so easily blow out and become 10kg.

We're heading down south tomorrow morning early. I think my girlies will be happy to get out of the city for a while. Our time is speeding by, it's been a week already. But oh what a week.

Bren's on the bed watching a movie with Michelle Williams as Marilyn Monroe, I'm off to finish packing and then I'll join him.

Thank you guys so much for your lovely comments, I'm so loving taking you along on our journey.

So what are you up to?
Are you having a lovely weekend?
I hope so.

Be good lovely peeps and happy travels. xx

Saturday, March 30, 2013


We are in Jerusalem and I feel like a kid in a candy store. I am fit to burst. I want to know everything and do everything. Every other time I've been here, I've been more interested in meeting up with friends, shopping, getting drunk or chasing boys. But this time I really want to be here and I want to know why; Why is he wearing that? What is that hat made out of? Why are there numbers on the bricks? What does that scrawly writing mean? How old is this place? Where can we get the best hummus?

And I want to know who all these men at the market in the Old City are. How long they have been doing what they do. Where they get their wares from. How much does it cost to rent a stall there and do leases come up often? Where their wives and families are. What their houses look like and what they'll eat for dinner.

I think I am becoming nosier as I get older.

And I want to look at everything. And taste everything. And know it's name. And it's history.

Jerusalem is probably the craziest place I have ever been. It is a melting pot of so many cultures and religions and nationalities. Everywhere you look there are people in different costumes, speaking different languages, on different missions.

I'm not sure any of the religious stuff is really for me, but I love Jerusalem's culture. I love the intensity and the feeling. It feels rich. It feels like it is filled with stories. I'm really fascinated by those stories.

And I'm fascinated by the experience my girlies are having. I wonder how much of this they are taking in. How much they'll remember. What they'll tell their friends when we get home. Jerusalem sure is a long way from Daylesford.

I hope you are well and happy lovely peeps.
I hope your weekend is magic.

Happy travels. xx

Friday, March 29, 2013

flea market

Yesterday, on our last day in Tel Aviv, we climbed the stairs and walked the stone floors of the old Port city of Yaffo/Jaffa. It was a public holiday and there were loads of people around but still we found our place and our pace. 

The girls counted stray cats, watched videos of jewelery making and posed for angel photos. While we admired gates and windows and colours and spoke of how inspiring travel is. How opening our eyes to new things also opens our minds and our hearts. 

After Yaffo, we made our way through more Tel Aviv streets to Shuk HaPishpeshim, the most wonderful and enormous flea market.

Last time I was in Israel I spent so much time at this market looking at and buying old clothes, jewelery, bits of Bedouin embroidery and other odds and ends. It is such a crazy mixture of old and new, clean and filthy, treasure and rubbish.

I could spend weeks in that market treasure hunting, unfortunately we were bound by time and tired little feet.

So we headed back to enjoy one last night with this as our hotel window view. A bit different to the forest view outside my bedroom window in our little farm in Daylesford hey.

And then this morning we drove to Jerusalem for the next chapter of our adventure. What a crazy, amazing day. I'll blog it tomorrow, right now I'm exhausted and off to sleep.

Layla tov (goodnight!)


Thursday, March 28, 2013

Carmel market

This morning we walked down the Tel Aviv streets to Shuk HaCarmel - The Carmel market. I've been looking forward to visiting the Israeli markets more than just about anything else on this trip. The smells, the colours, the flavours, the people, the noises, the culture...

And Oh. My. Goodness. What an adventure.

We found...

Spices of every type you can imagine.

Towers and stacks of breads of every shape and size, even though it's Passover.

Olives! (I've eaten so many I may just turn into an olive by the end of this.)

So many flavours of Turkish delight.

Pens and iphone cases and clothes and shoes and sunglasses and underwear and jewelery and lighters too.

Have you ever tasted dried pineapple? Dried kiwi fruit? Dried banana? Dried cherries? So much YUM!

Gorgeous looking fresh fruit and veg.

We bought the coffee flavoured halva.

Jazzy's heaven on earth.

Towers of sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeets.


Yep we found some organics too.

We filled our backpacks and we filled our camera memory cards.

We had such a wonderful market day. My heart and my head and my tummy are full.

I feel crazily, ridiculously, inspired and excited.

I hope you are traveling well my friends.
I'll show you the pics I took at the flea market soon.
We're heading to Jerusalem tomorrow early.

Shalom. xx

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