Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Sights to See: City of David, Jerusalem Walls National Park, Jerusalem, Israel

City of David, Jerusalem Walls National Park  This is the original city of Jerusalem created by King David 3,000 years ago. Located just outside the wall of the Old City, south of the Temple Mount, and long an Arab area, it is nowadays being slowly changed by the Jewish groups buying up homes. As I stood on a platform overlooking the Gihon Spring, I heard roosters crowing and saw goats grazing this surprising urban, yet rural, area.

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image c2012 Carole Terwilliger Meyers


Monday, February 27, 2012

Good Eats: Nicholas Restaurant , Portland, Oregon

Nicholas Restaurant 318 SE Grand Ave., 503-235-5123. L-D daily; $. The first thing I noticed in this Lebanese-Middle Eastern venue is the gigantic round flatbreads hanging over the sides of a raised serving plate on each table. This bread is so good that just it plus several appetizers is the way to go--perhaps hummus, eggplant baba ghanoug, or yogurt-cucumber tahziki spreads as well as some falafels and stuffed grape leaves. The gyros sandwich is also very good and comes wrapped in this same bread. Entrée items, Lebanese pizza, and mezza platters are also options. Portions are generous, and vegan choices are available.
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image c2012 Carole Terwilliger Meyers

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Friday, February 24, 2012

Sights to See: Church of Mary Magdalene, Jerusalem, Israel

Church of Mary Magdalene Featuring seven golden onion domes, this Russian Orthodox church was built in honor of the czar's mother in 1886. A mosaic inside depicts the legend of Mary Magdalene presenting an egg to the Emperor Tiberias. When she handed it to him, the egg is said to have turned red, symbolic of Jesus' blood. Nuns from all over the world now live here in the convent.

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image c2012 Carole Terwilliger Meyers  

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Sights to See: Church of All Nations, Jerusalem, Israel

Church of All Nations Adjacent to the Gethsemane, this church was built in 1944 with Catholic donations and is believed to be the spot where Jesus prayed his last prayer before his crucifixion. Known also as the “church of grief,” the dark and gloomy interior is by design. The exterior features a lovely mosaic façade and gable roof.

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image c2012 Carole Terwilliger Meyers 

Friday, February 17, 2012

Sights to See: Gethsemane, Jerusalem, Israel

Gethsemane  This garden at the foot of the Mount of Olives is where Jesus and his disciples are believed to have prayed the night before his crucifixion. The olive trees in the garden are very, very old--some are claimed to be 1,500 years old--and still bear fruit.

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image c2012 Carole Terwilliger Meyers 

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Good Eats: Balthazar, NYC

updated August 10, 2015

Balthazar 80 Spring St./Crosby St., SoHo, 212-965-1414. Getting a reservation here during prime dining times can be a challenge, but if you come a little earlier or later you can sometimes waltz right in and sit down amid the grandeur. I especially enjoy breakfast here. 
grand interior of Balthazar in NYC

High ceilings, huge antique mirrors, and gilt galore top off the general roar from pleased diners, and I have found myself with French-speaking neighbors on either side. A nice and useful touch is the striped kitchen towels used for napkin. At brunch the eggs Norwegian (with smoked salmon)
eggs Norwegian at Balthazar in NYC

or the crisp waffle with fresh fruit make satisfying choices, especially with a French-style bowl of cafe au lait.
French-style bowl of cafe au lai and almond croissant at Balthazar in NYC

More delicious breakfast items include spinach poached eggs
spinach poached eggs at Balthazar in NYC

and traditional eggs Benedict.
eggs Benedict at Balthazar in NYC

And because the restaurant is known for its wonderful French pastries (you can pick some up to go in the tiny bakery adjacent), do order a sticky bun, croissant, or some other delicious flaky thing as well. 
A good souvenir from the bakery is the sweetly packaged house granola, but I find the dried fruit to be a hard-to-chew negative. 
house granola to go at Balthazar in NYC

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image c2012 Carole Terwilliger Meyers

Monday, February 13, 2012

Sights to See: Dominus Flevit Church, Jerusalem, Israel

Dominus Flevit Church On the Palm Sunday Path. Built in 1955 to commemorate Jesus weeping over Jerusalem, this small church has a splendid view of the Old City through its ornate chapel window. Excavations during construction of the church uncovered a number of inscripted ossuaries (bone boxes) from the time of Jesus.

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image c2012 Carole Terwilliger Meyers 

Friday, February 10, 2012

Things to Do: Park Here, The Indoor Pop-Up Park, NYC


Park Here, The Indoor Pop-Up Park 201 Mulberry St./Spring St., 212-344-0288. Dec-Feb, daily noon-8pm. Free. New Yorkers and visitors who grow tired of winter’s snow and cold weather can find refuge in indoor parks that pop-up around the city. In addition to frolicking on recycled synthetic NewGrass and basking in the heated air, visitors can sip Starbucks and other drinks, view films, and just relax on a picnic blanket, hammock, or park bench. Wi-Fi is free. Mornings are reserved for moms and their young children. But hurry, this year the park’s last day is February 15.

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image c2012 Carole Terwilliger Meyers

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Sights to See: Mount of Olives, Jerusalem, Israel

The steep downhill road known as Palm Sunday Path leads from the top to the bottom of the Mount of Olives. From the summit you can see the panorama of Jerusalem and the Old City.

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image c2012 Carole Terwilliger Meyers

Monday, February 6, 2012

Sights to See: Israel

“This is a small country. Every stream, we call it a river, every village a city, and every hill a mountain. We make the most of it,” confided my guide, Yariv Hen. And though Israel, which is about the size of New Jersey, has existed just over 50 years, it has become one of the strongest economies in the world. And despite the global economic downturn and the drop in international travel, 2011 was the best year ever for tourism to Israel. Here are a few videos that might whet your own appetite to visit this surprising land where the sim card was invented (the cell phone is described here as a piece of plastic with a Jewish brain) and where you can float with ease in the world's second-saltiest body of water.

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Thursday, February 2, 2012

Things to Do: Pearl River Mart, NYC

Pearl River Mart 477 Broadway/Grand St., 800-878-2446, 212-431-4770. Daily 10-7:20. This huge department store purveys all things Asian and is fun to walk through—a visit is sort of like browsing all of Chinatown in one big shop. You’ll also find a large selection of inexpensive “I Love New York” souvenir items here.

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image c2012 Carole Terwilliger Meyers