Thursday, December 28, 2006

Snow kidding

The country was on high weather alert yesterday. Big storm coming--batten down the hatches. Snow! For a country that gets snow maybe once a year, it was big news. Well, there were flakes here and there, and it started snowing again when I went to sleep, so I grabbed the camera first thing in the morning, opened the front door, and found this:

Who says Israel can't make a real big something out of nothing?

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Shvil Yisrael--Herzliya, heading north

Amy, I owe you an apology. I begged off getting together at Gourmet Yarns to catch up on work, but at about 10 o'clock The Spouse came into my office and made me an offer I couldn't refuse: "It's beautiful out. It's supposed to be disgusting tomorrow and Wednesday. Want to go for a walk along Shvil Yisrael?"

As a family we've walked sections of the Israel National Trail before, and would have liked to walk it all with them, but as the kids get older and have busier lives, we're seeing that it's just not possible. So we sat down with the maps we own (2 of the dozen or so) and a book about the trail to find a short segment which was accessible by car and/or bus.

We decided to walk north from Apollonia and turn around when The Spouse's heel spurs were hurting too much. (He started complaining after 19 minutes of walking, but I got him to keep on going until we'd walked 48 minutes in one direction.) To get down to the trail you pass the top of the Shell House
You go down the stairway and look for the Shvil Yisrael signage (the orange, blue and white marking on the staircase which tells you whether to go straight or, as in this case, bear to a different direction).
You pass alongside the Shell House (I wonder if this guy owns his lot or is a squatter?)
The walk itself is on the beach under the Apollonia Nature Preserve. There are signs, here and there, warning about landslides, and they're not kidding. It's obvious that at one point the wall which is currently on the rocks of the beach was attached to the remnant up the cliff.
Where this granite column fell from is anyone's guess, but the beach for at least a half kilometer north is littered with marble.
At one point you have to walk through the fallen ruins to continue. In the summer, I suppose you could just wade in the ocean instead, but yesterday was a little too cool, and The Spouse was wearing his super-duper orthopedic shoes and I cloth sneakers, so we didn't chance it.
The trail is listed as easy walking, and it is for the most part, but there are some tricky areas where you have to negotiate the ruins.
Once you get through the rock-falls it's just a nice
stunning walk.

Thursday, December 21, 2006