If you live or visit Tel Aviv any time soon you have to, just HAVE TO, go to the Lea Gottlieb exhibition at the Design Museum of Holon! It’s an amazing exhibition called “Lady of the Dasies” and it showcases the history of the famous brand Gotex that Lea founded in 1956. She said “I Like Making Something Out of Nothing” and believe me, she really did, her work is splendorous and fascinating. So I repeat, if you have a chance – run to check her work, I promise you won’t regret it.
Last week I went for a short trip to Barcelona – my favorite city! If you don’t know yet, before I moved to Tel Aviv I was living there for a few years and I have to say that since I left I’ve been missing that place almost every day! There are SO many reasons one can love Barcelona, I will tell you why I do.
Barcelona is situated on the Mediterranean shore and the weather is nice for most of the year 🙂 You can enjoy the beach and sun all year round; even during the winter it’s usually not too cold for having a nice walk on the beach. Barcelona is also very multicultural – people from all over the world come to live there and it makes that city so unique! So many languages, different cultures, religions and ways of living are coexisting there. I remember when I came to the city for the first time I was very amused by that and I felt that no matter what you do and who you are you can find something for yourself in Barcelona. And so I did. And instead of staying 3 months I stayed more than a year and after the next two years I came back again to do my master’s degree there. Barcelona feels like a second home for me, I know all the small streets, bars with cheap Mojito and cool places to shop. Even if I go there as a tourist and take a lot of new pictures I really don’t feel like one – I feel like I’ve never left that place and I really belong there. Sometimes I laugh and say that I was born in Poland by mistake and even that I can’t say that I feel more Spanish than Polish I can definitely say that living in Barcelona has changed me, my way of seeing things and living life. One day I would like to have a wooden house on the beach close to Barcelona. Hopefully sooner than later 😉
One of the reasons why I like it here is the weather. Yes, the weather. I was born and raised in a cold country, where the winters are long and very cold and summers short and not always warm and sunny.
I love summer, I love sun, I love the sea and the beach. That’s why a few years ago I decided, that I will not live in a cold country for the rest of my life and that the weather affects me in so many ways that I have to take it into consideration while planning my future. You may think that the cold could not be a reason to move out of somewhere but believe me, for me it was. Not the only one of course, but a very important one.
These last days were wonderful, warm and sunny. I had the day off because of the Israeli elections so I went for a long walk along the sea shore. The beach was full of people, some of them were even swimming in the sea! You could see the happiness and joy on kids faces, couples resting on the sand and animals playing cheerfully. I loved that. This weather and the fact that sometimes there is more than 20 degrees in January compensates for the many hard days that I had here. If you have a chance to visit I would recommend you to do it soon, before the real summer starts and the heat will be difficult to stand…;-)
When I was thinking about my next post about Tel Aviv, I remembered that long time ago I wrote a short article about my first time in this city. While reading it after a long time I realized how much I was stunned by Israel when I came here for the first time and how much I wanted to come back here. So now, I think, I might be a little bit closer to finding the answer for the question from my first post – how did I end up living here?
The whole article was written is Spanish but I decided to translate a few parts of it and share them with you.
“All great loves and passions come unexpected; they change your life radically, enter without permission and usually stay forever. I’m sure you know very well what I’m talking about – who didn’t feel this way at least once? Who hasn’t suffered sleepless nights, days without eating, loss of focus caused by thinking about something or someone very special? Well, I’ve never expected that I will get completely amused and charmed by the city that I’ve knew practically nothing about until I was 21. Who would believe that the place that is shown on TV and other medias as a dangerous and not really tourist friendly will make me save every penny to go and see it again? If you told me that, I wouldn’t believe, but…one phone call started it all and changed my way of thinking about Israel forever.(…)
As soon as I landed I had this very special feeling that is difficult to describe. The air smelled of the sea and although I noticed very high humidity I wasn’t bothered at all. The airport was awesome, new and modern, opposite of what I’ve expected. The walls were full of paintings and postcards showing the country’s history. I felt great.(…)
Tel Aviv surprised me in every possible way. Beautiful beaches, nice architecture and tons of people everywhere. I was sure it’s going to be the best holiday ever. My first direction was Jaffa, the oldest part of the city. How much I loved it! Narrow streets with small houses, an old port and many restaurants and cafes with sea view – something unforgettable.(…)The famous Carmel market, located in the city center cannot be compared to any European market. I’ve never seen so many colors, smells, exotic fruits and vegetables, spices, jewelry and cosmetics at the same place in my life. Crowded, loud and crazy in a way but unforgettable. Being there one can enjoy Arabic food and fresh juices made from exotic fruits. Simple and delicious, exactly the way I like it. (…)
Few days a week there is also another market called “Flea Market” which is open from noon to midnight. You can buy there all kinds of handicrafts: clothes, necklaces and earrings, paintings and household items – all made by Israeli artists. In the evening concerts and various shows are held in the streets and the variety of what you can see and hear is pretty impressive.(…)
Besides all this, Tel Aviv never sleeps. It is full of bars, cafes, galleries, shops and nightclubs. Everyone can find something interesting there. No matter if you like art or music, if you prefer to eat in a fancy restaurant or in a traditional bar, or if you like laying on the beach or dancing until early morning hours…regardless of what you choose you’ll have a lot of fun and you won’t forget it for a long time.(…)”
Well, I wrote this a long time before I moved here. As you all know, reality is always a little bit different than experiencing something as a tourist but I have to say, that going back to the past and thinking about the moments that I was here only for a while made me want to discover all those small things that I liked about Tel Aviv again and enjoy those little details that I could see back then.
PS. Forgive me the quality of some of the pictures, they were taken few years ago with simple compact camera.