Monday, May 19, 2008

10AM - Shimon Z'evi and me!
You may remember that yesterday I met Shimon Z'evi thru an email and phone conversation. We made plans to meet this morning. And when my phone rang, it was Shimon telling me that he was walking down Herzl Boulevard toward my apartment. We spent about three hours sharing things, and getting to know each other.

Shimon and I are about the same age. He and his family escaped the hell that became Europe in the late 1930s and were smuggled out of Germany to live in Switzerland. Shimon had talent and intellect. He enrolled in California Institute of Technology and received and engineering degree.

1PM - Going for lunch.
"I love living in Jerusalem, and have lived here 48 years", Shimon told me as we went out for lunch at a restaurant at the Mahane Yehuda Market. We went to a place that served "Israeli food." We had lamb served on a spit with pita bread, many small plates of vegetables and one wonderful plate of hummus with garbanzo beans. I love hummus!
In my apartment.

Shimon at the restaurant.

Israeli soup!

3PM - Taking pics!
Both Shimon and I love to take pics! As we walked back from the restaurant to my apartment, Shimon was snapping many pics. And Little Mavicito was capturing pics of Shimon taking pictures!

Shimon has been publishing his pics for many years! [Link]

Life is hard in Israel.
Shimon feels that life in Israel is hard, especially because of military service. Israeli citizens are required to serve in the Israel Defence Force [IDF]. At age 18, men serve for three years, women for two years. I believe that Israel is the only country in the World where women are required to serve in the military.

After active service, men serve in the reserve IDF until age 45. Reserve service requires 30 days active service every year. This means that men are away from family and work for these 30 days. Salary from work is minimal during reserve service. Wow!


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