Wednesday, June 15, 2011


S is for Swimming.

The short version is that about a year and a half ago my orthopedic doctor told me I had to start swimming. My reaction was, "Free Willie?!?"

He had the good grace to chuckle, but I wasn't kidding. I'm Jewish. I go to the beach or pool with my towel wrapped around my polkehs. And after Bubbie Channah passed away I HAD POLKEHS...don't ask. Six Snickers a day plus potato get the picture. And putting that mass of lovelyness into a bathing suit could have blinded those poor nice people swimming jaunty and jolly in the water!

But, my legs and back were so painful that I decided to give it a try. Somehow I had a suit pushed way back at the end of my shelf and it sort of fitted.

I began scouting pools in the city and found one just up the way from my place, and the price was great. So I hauled myself up there and signed up FOR A YEAR! I figured if I committed to twelve months I would shelp my sorry tuchess to the water.

What I hadn't bargained for is that I LOVE IT! Who knew?

Between the pool and Judy the miracle worker diet lady, I have lost over forty pounds and a gazillion inches off my frame.

Another miracle in the Holy Land, trust me.

So, here's the regime. I swim two lengths and run in place for a count of one hundred. The first time I hung onto the side until I said to myself, "Idiot, you're in water! How far can you fall?" Don't ask!

Now, I'm up to 34 lengths and 3, 400 runs in an hour. Yahooooooo!

I go twice a week because I simply don't have any more free time. Mondays and Wednesdays I'm there. At just before seven in the morning my body is in the water. And off I go.

Let me tell you about the people who swim with me. They all make me look young! Get it? And from 8:15 it is only ladies and that's when the religious ladies arrive. See, they don't swim with men. And they quickly take their hats off and put on the bathing caps. And, some wear long dresses. And others wear undershirts over their suits. I don't know how they don't drown, but these ladies are unbelievable. And they show up every day...well six days...okay maybe five so they can cook and get ready for Shabbat.


The hardest part is getting out of the pool. See, on the way there you have your suit on under your clothes and all you have to do is strip, put the damn cap on, wrap yourself in the towel and go down the stairs to the pool. But...on the way out you have to face gravity and peel that suit off and shower and dry your hair you shouldn't catch pneumonia from the freezing cold outside and maybe put a little makeup on you shouldn't scare the taxi driver and haul your sorry tuchess into the house where you are now ready to eat breakfast and have a big mug of coffee!

One morning as I walked back into the changing room there was only one little old lady in the room. She was sitting on a green towel and was stark naked except for her little ankle socks! She didn't notice me because she was busy holding up a little mirror as she applied her lipstick! I LOVE MY LADIES.

This week I have to see how long they will freeze my subscription as I'll be away for the summer. Sharon says I can swim in the pool in her building while I'm there and my brother David says I can use his treadmill while I'm in Colorado. And Maeshey says I can swim in the ocean while I'm by him in California.

Who knows? I may break down and buy a new suit. The first one got too big. The next one got too big. And, if I am very careful and, God help me, don't eat myself into hysteria, I may not get into too much trouble the two months I'm in Canada and the States.

Whatever happens, my ladies will be there waiting for me and encouraging me when I get back.

Have a great day...stay safe...and thanks for dropping in.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


R is for Restaurants!!!

Most of you know that I love cooking. I cook all the time. I cook like a crazy fool. And as much as I love cooking I love going to restaurants.

When Bubbie Channah was alive, I would meet her every day for lunch. We went to a little restaurant just down the street from her apartment. It was called Mervad HaKsamim...the Magic Carpet and it had great Yeminite food.

My Dad A'H could never remember the name of the place so he called it Two Steps because you had to climb two steps to get in. My Mom hated the food. Well she didn't hate the food until she moved here. THEN she decided she hated the food. See, it wasn't the food. It was the spices...especially cumin. Me? I love them!!!

Here is my favourite Ma and Pa story from Two Steps. One day I got there late and the folks were already seated and waiting to order.

Ma turned to me and said, "Marallyn, what does that sign say?"
Me: It says Emergency Exit.
Me: What did you know?
Ma: Yesterday your father and I came here for coffee. And, while we were waiting, I lit a cigarette (That was in the days when it was acceptable to smoke in restaurants).
Me: So?
Ma: So! A nasty lady turned to me and in a very nasty voice said, 'Can't you read that sign?' I looked to where she was pointing and yes there was a sign but no I couldn't read it. When I admitted that I couldn't read it, the lady informed me that the sign said No Smoking. So I put out my cigarette. THAT'S THE SIGN!!! Emergency Exit. Wait till I get my hands on that lady!!!

I don't have as much time to go to restaurants this year as my teaching schedule is booked solid...tfu tfu tfu. But, I do have a couple of mornings free for breakfast and one afternoon and one evening.

I love restaurants for many reasons. One...I'm not cooking or cleaning or washing up. I'm sitting and being served. Two...I can eat food I would never make at Chinese or Middle Eastern grilled stuff yum yum...or my favourite of all Meurav me on this one and don't ask too many questions. is a social time where I can sit with my friends enjoying an evening or morning out. And finally...since I work at home it gets me back among Jerusalemites.

Here are my favourite places to go to:
Eldad V;Zehu...the owner is not only a friend but a of my wonderful three mentchen...great great food...not expensive...make a reservation.
Zidkiyahu...the owner is another one of my three mentchen and this is where I go for the Middle Eastern grilled hungry. shop...humungous salads and a great breakfast shop...great coffee...home made breads come with the meal
Imma's...Kurdi husband is a Kurd...great kubbeh soup
Pereg...neighbourhood coffee shop

P.S. Notice that none of these places serve sushi. I ate sushi three times...the first/the last/and one too many! Enough said!

A lot of my favourites have closed over the years...Pfefferbergs...Hepners...LaGondola...the Chinese restaurant that I never could remember the name the 2000 Year Old Man would say...back in the days when they I'm still...but they're not.

I don't go to fancy restaurants. That's not my style. I love amcha...folsky...where the people go. In my little restaurants you can run in to Chaverei Knesset...members of our Parliament...and they will be happy to talk to you or just say hi. You will meet fancy lawyers...they're the guys with the ties. And you will meet the most interesting folk who are happy to tell you the pros and cons of what they ordered...and a quick shake of the head if you order something they don't think is so hotsy-totsy. Ah, my Jerusalemites.

We Jews love to eat. And restaurants are our forte. We know them, we are comfortable in them and we are experts on the portions.

As Jackie Mason said...Where the Jewish couple is busy complaining about the portion of their cake, the Gentile family at the next table is singing HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOUUUU...

Come visit. I'll make you home made and we'll go check out some of Jerusalem's more interesting places to eat. Try'll like it.

(ps...sorry it has taken me so long to write again. Life and getting ready for my trip and fighting with the cable people and the internet folk has kept me busy. pps. I won with the cable people and the internet folk. I may be short but I'm feisty!)

Have a great day...stay safe...and thanks for dropping in.