Bucharest Belgrade Sofia Istanbul

Greetings! Although I said that we would try to blog semi-regularly on this trip, I have been lazy and internet has been spotty. Sorry, Mom. Since my last post, we spent a few more days in Bucharest, Romania, then two days in Belgrade, Serbia, one day in Sofia, Bulgaria, and now we are in Istanbul, Turkey.

The last few days in Romania were mostly good. On Boxing Day we visited the mountain town of Braşov abour two hours outside of Bucharest, and although a few sights were closed it was a really nice day. Oddly enough, the town’s synagogue and Christian Orthodox church were both closed, even though 26 December is not a holiday for those religions. (Most of the region is Orthodox, in fact – I’m pretty sure it’s the major religion in Romania, Serbia, and Bulgaria). The town of Braşov is at the base of a big hill/small mountain with a cable-car to the top where there are amazing views. Near the cable car is a huge Hollywood-style “BRAŞOV” sign (awesome). Continue reading “Bucharest Belgrade Sofia Istanbul”

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Israel: Some Photos and Jumbled Thoughts

Hey there, blog! Earlier this summer, I went on what might be one of the most awesome trips ever: 10 days in Israel, for free, with a ton of cool people who are now my friends. Oh, and I rode a camel (no big deal). In case you haven’t guessed, this was indeed the famed Taglit-Birthright Israel, the free trip for Jewish kids to visit the homeland, eat falafel, and hang out with other Jews. It was great, and gave me a way to connect with my family/cultural history in a way that I hadn’t previously. (Also, it temporarily shook me out of the post-college/job-I-despise/what-am-I-doing-with-my-life slump, but that’s neither here nor there.)

The other day my brother and I were joking that while many of my Facebook friends are posting about the BDS movement and Palestinian recognition, I was posting what amounted to, “wheee! I’m on a camel in the desert this is AWESOME!” Which made me feel like a bit of an asshole. Continue reading “Israel: Some Photos and Jumbled Thoughts”