So on this, the fraptuous day, we all woke up at about 5 in the morning, and decided to go to my nearby aunt’s house, who lives in an apartment in Telaviv. We had a lovely day, as we all got to meet my second-newest cousin. He is adorable! He’s like a chubby little munchkin, and his nicknames, for some unrelated reason, are “Chino” and “John” (I approve of the latter – Dr. John Watson is amazing). He is amazingly well behaved, and he is gorgeous – he has large, brown liquid eyes, the same as his sister, absolute fans of lashes, and tightly curled golden brown hair. He’s about a year old, but he doesn’t talk yet – just says “aba!” for everything (which means dad in hebrew) and points.
Then we trained back to my grandparents’ where we were staying. Whereas in New Zealand, public transport is very limited and usually late, with trains breaking down regularly, buses not turning up and general malfunctions, in Israel there are frequent buses all over the country, as well as trams and trains that are on time and much more well kept. The quality of a train ride was notably better, as in Israel, trains provide the main method of conveying the many members of the Israeli Army. Therefore, the stations are usually next to army bases, and the trains themselves are filled with various soldiers. The trains are all newish, clean, fast trains (a majority of which are double-decker) with plush seats, wide windows, and blinds, and they smoothly arrive at stations with only a bit of a whine and a scream of brakes. They’re also exactly on time, so if you snooze you lose, and they have dispensed of ticket-officers on trains.
My brother happens to be born on 25th December. His first party was nice and small – dinner that my grandma made, which entailed meat patties, haricot verts (green beans) , tomatoes and capsicum stuffed with rice, and for dessert a scrumptious chocolate cake with whipped cream and a strawberry (from jam), as well as sweet bagel things that my mum waxed eloquent over. Also, crembo.
Crembo is the Israeli “winter ice-cream”. It is delicious. It is also actually originally Danish, but don’t tell that to the Israelis. I LOVE IT!!!! The problem is that, as it’s made a sort of marshmellow-fluffy-sweet-sticky-thing on a cookie, coated in chocolate, it doesn’t import well 😦