I must say that despite losing an hour due to daylight savings time FINALLY reaching Israel, I have been quite active and productive these last two days! I must admit that I am not very experienced when it comes to concert going so naturally I jumped at the chance to join my girlfriend susanna at a "Balkan Beat Box" concert here in Tel Aviv. Balkan Beat Box is an Israeli political band, and though I was not familiar with them Susanna's description of their music led me to believe that I would really enjoy them. In actuality all she said to sell me was that they have some Arabic songs; that's all it took :-).
At around 8:30 pm I ventured over to Susanna's apartment where we then walked over to meet up with two of her friends that would be joining us at the concert. We arrived at the venue early enough to leisurely enjoy the outside surroundings where there was beautiful wall art to enjoy, food stands, and a number of other pre-concert attractions.
|Some of the wall art|
|Enjoying the scenery|
|View of the stage|
|Goofy photo op|
|The crowd anxiously awaiting|
|Getting all ready for good music|
|Balkan Beat Box|
|Can't have a photo shoot without making at least one face|
|Me and Suze! I'm so glad she is back!|
By 12:30 I was absolutely exhausted but I champed through the last 30 minutes of the concert despite pretty severe dehydration that made me feel as if I was close to death. When the concert finally ended Suze and I left the venue and walked a ways away from the crowed in the hopes of finding cabs to take us home. Despite the massive crowds of people we were finally successful in finding our rides and I went right home to bed.
When I woke up this morning I thought I might as well start reading the Hunger Games Trilogy because I am so tired of not knowing what all this hype is about! I have only read about 30 pages or so but it seems very interesting thus far. After a few hours of reading Ben, his girlfriend Bar, and I decided it was too perfect of a day to stay inside doing nothing so we decided to go to the big Safari/Zoo in the neighboring city of Ramat Gan. Spring has finally arrived to Israel and we were about to take full advantage of being outside for a few hours! I can honestly say I have never experienced anything quite like this place despite having gone to plenty of zoos in my time. When we first arrived we were guided to a drive through Safari where we were to stay in the car driving through acres of land where various animals were free to roam right up to the cars. This was a bit strange for me since the USA would most likely never allow anything like this to take place due to insurance costs, but it seemed perfectly normal for Israel. The first animals we saw were a heap of Ostriches (some of whom were not shy about coming right up to cars). They really are ugly, stupid animals!
|For our own safety I was glad they had this sign|
|Just saying a friendly hello|
|Ramat Gan: Where animals and humans share the road|
|I guess he really wanted to see what was in that car|
Once we had finished with the Ostriches it was on to much larger animals like Rhinos, Zebras and Gazelles, one of whom really took a fancy to me and I thought he was going to attempt to jump into Bar's little toyota. It was amazing being able to get so close to the animals! When we arrived to the Zebra area there was one very stern looking male who was standing guard to make sure no measly human got out to mess with his herd. They are such beautiful animals and it really felt like I was on an African safari out in the wild (seeing as all the animals at this point were running completely free).
|What a tough life! He is taking a little nap :-)|
|He really wanted to come in the car|
|They really just don't look so real|
|The fact that at any moment this guy could come running towards your car is not so comforting|
|Guarding the herd|
|We could get real up close and personal|
|Having the best time!|
|It's a babyyyy!|
|Cleaning time! And seriously... Just look at the butts... That's not normal|
|The lone chimp|
|Couldn't pass up this photo op|
|He looks like he needs some lovies|
|The big man|
|The Giraffe enclosure|
|A beautiful bull|
|My new friend|
|Bar decided to join in the fun and feed her|
|Benny after feeding her|
After our excitement at the giraffe compound we made a point to see the wild cats (who were absolutely breathtakingly stunning), a few more bird and monkey enclosures, and some domesticated goats, sheep, and llamas, and then it was time to start thinking about heading home. We had had a very full 4 and a half hours, and we were a bit tuckered out!
|My favorite animal|
|The king taking a nap|
|I think we interrupted a moment|
It was an extremely successful weekend and I have had such an incredible time. This hasn't been the most active weekend party wise which is nice because every once in a while changing your routine is very healthy! This next week will be spent hitting the books so that I don't have anything to worry about when I leave for a 5 day vacation to ISTANBUL a week from Tuesday! I am so excited to travel :-)
Until we meet again ya asdeqa!
Tisba7 3ala khier <3,