Nov 11, 2008

Tel Aviv

Welcome to the city of Tel Aviv, which is only an hours ride away. Tel Aviv is home to alot of buildings that were built in the BauHaus ( style, which is represented by the absence of ornamentation and by the harmony between the function of an object or a building and it's design. Bauhaus influenced art, architecture, graphic design, interior design, and typography. Some artists to have been influenced were Josef Albers, Kandinsky, Paul Klee, and Piet Mondrian. But I didn't come here to just see architecture, I came to see plants. Being as Tel Aviv is on the coast, the temperature is considerably higher than that of Jerusalem, which means certain plants will be hardier here.Here on the streets, it wasn't uncommon to find Ficus trees growing large and luminous providing tons of shade for the mere mortals on the street. These definitely put the one you have in the corner of your office to shame....... Tsk. Tsk.

It is still fascinating to me that Palms are everywhere here, where as my only experience was at Joyce's Palm house at Longwood. There are Date farms here in Israel with these marvelous monocots planted in rows to harvest the fruits easily.

cheep cheep... There is a story here about the common sparrow, where the name that it is called is freedom. This is because while the birds in the world were all waiting to get their colors assigned to them, and with some giving very elaborate color schemes and details (we know who you are peacocks and toucans.....) , the sparrow was so impatient to get out of line that when it was their turn and they were asked what color they wanted, a quick reply of "Brown" was said so that they could take off flying again and get going on their business again.

It was a surprise to come across this tree on the street, Ceiba pentandra. Notice the large yellow flowers, which turn into this melon-like fruit once pollinated and then get dispersed my the fluffy cotton-like mass of seed? While it may be fun to look at how varied the flowers, fruit and seed can be from each other, once thing you would like to admire from a distance would be

it's non-inviting trunk. Could it be any more effective though if you don't want people hanging around outside your home?

There have been a few times now where sweet potatoes have been seen growing this way, with the tuber emerged in a glass of water and letting its delicate foliage clamber up some form of vertical support. Easy for the brown thumbed......ahem.

Here is the Schlomo Lahat Promenade on the Mediterranean Sea, which looks like the inspiration could have come from the Roberto Burle Marx designed Copacabana beach promenade in Brazil. Could it be?!

One can see the modern city rising up from the ancient port city of Jaffa, where I stayed.

Sometimes it's luck of the draw where you stay, either it's on your side or not. This hostel felt like being in an old movie with all it's intricate details and quirks.

A Joan Miro inspired lunch? No, I cannot get enough of hummus and vegetables.....

One hour and one GoldStar later......... into the book.
The decaying lock on the shutters to the balcony

The harbor in the morning, much quieter than the center of the city.....