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(Last year -2021)

7th May 2022

Itamar navy
Itamar in Navy Uniform, with Family

This last week Israel celebrated her 74th Indepence Day. Doreen and I were with the Segolis on Independance eve in Midreshet Ben Gurion, and then went down to Eilat to see grandson Itamar Levy dressed in white navy uniform. The picture above is of the family with Itamar at the base. We missed the base but were happy to see Itamar in his uniform later. See here for a picture of us with Itamar.
  • While in Eilat Doreen and daughter-in-law Limor went to a vantage point to watch (not very successfully) the air force fly-over
  • Recently Doreen set herself two short term goals:  (1) Take tennis lessons and play tennis with grandson Maayan Segoli, and (2) obtain diving insurance which normally is not valid after age 75. This  involves undergoing many medical tests. This week she succeeded in both. Well done, Doreen - your husband is proud of you!
  • We met this week with some overseas friends - Shirley Poluck visiting from England, and Helene and Selwyn Levitan visiting from South Africa.
  • Doreen prepared delicious steamed fish (Chinese Style) from the locally farmed Red Tilapia. Read her recipe.

30th April
EL bday 82
My 82nd Birthday

Doreen and I celebrated my birthday at the M25 Restaurant in the Tel Aviv Carmel Market. At night, when the regular shops and stalls close, the market becomes a fascinating hive of eating places - restaurants, quick food, beer halls etc. The M25 restaurant is informal and "in" at the same time and  incorporates a butchery where the diners choose the meat they want cooked. We chose two large steaks (entrecote and sirloin) which we thoroughly enjoyed.
The next morning we went out for breakfast at the local Roladin branch.
At my age, the giving of presents etc is not needed - but doing something new and/or unusual is an appreciated gift.

  • Son Moran and Mikhal and Zoe Segoli have returned from their holiday in USA, and son Aviv Levy is also back in Israel after an enjoyable Caribbean trip.
  • Granddaughter Zoe was on the plane from USA to Israel but that didn't prevent a birthday cake.
  • Passover falls during the school holidays but Zoe's class enacted the exodus from Egypt on return to school.
  • We invited the Kessels Colin and Louise and Terry and Carol for tea to view the clip from our 1990 Sinai trip.
  • Doreen prepared delicious steamed fish (Chinese Style) from the locally farmed Red Tilapia. Read her recipe.

23rd April

Sinai trip 1990
Sinai Trip 1990
Back, l-r: Aviv Levy, Shlomo Recht, Galor Tamir, Dudi Goodman
Front, l-r: Claire Recht (supporting the exhausted guide Itzik), Doreen and Eitan Levy, Louise and Colin Kessel, Ziona and Dovvie Glassman, Ada Angel

Thanks to son Moran my old 16mm and 8mm films have been finally digitalised. I am slowly going through them and enjoying seeing pictures of my family when I was a child but also of my family in more recent times. At the moment I am viewing randomly and came across our trip to Sinai in 1990. I wrote about this trip some years ago on this site - see here.
During pesach we had re-established contact with Claire and Shlomo Recht after a break of many years and by sheer coincidence the next day I came across and viewed the trip on the newly digitalised video. We spent a very pleasant afternoon viewing the video at their beautiful home in Jaffa  and enjoying a fish meal at a local restaurant. (Click here a picture of the four of us).

16th April

Pesach Seder at the Rons
Clockwise: Aviv Levy, Aviv Ron, Limor , Ilai , Amit and  Itamar Levy, Doreen, Me, Patisa Rasmussen, Sofia Rasmussen, Lior Ron, Danielle Ron, Vered Ron

We had a lovely Passover seder at the home of Vered and Aviv Ron. Great atmosphere, not too long haggadah reading and of course plenty (too much!) delicious  food. And of course the singing, culminating in the family production of 'Who Knows One?'
  • We wish all our family and friends a happy Passover, the holiday that celebrates freedom and the victory over tyranny. Doreen wrote to our friends:
    "As we celebrate Pesach, our festival of freedom, let us take a moment to remember those less fortunate than ourselves.Those unfortunate people standing against the aggression of stronger and larger forces, those who have no food security, no access to good medical care, no jobs and without the pleasure of a quiet and peaceful day.
    Not to mention the ravages of nature destroying our beloved planet!"
  • Chopped liver is traditionally (at least in our family) an important part of the Passover seder meal. To enable the vegans in our family to enjoy chopped liver Doreen prepares a vegan version, which even most of the meat eaters prefer to the real thing!
  • The Segolis are in USA for a vacation and visiting Mikhal's sister and brother-in-law who are now working in Florida. Unfortunately Disney World was fully booked, but there is plenty to do in Orlando, like visiting Epcot.
  • After our visit last week to Eilat, granddaughters Amit and Ilai Levy came up from Eilat and spent the week with us. They and we enjoyed the visit. They joined up with Sofia for a visit to the Carmel market and went bowling with granddaughter Lior Ron. (Pictures here)

9th April 2022
dinner with family and friends
Dinner in Eilat
Left, front to back: Doreen, Vered, Limor, Aviv, Amit
Right, front to back:  Me, Patisa, Sophia, Ilai, Itamar

This week we spent a few days in Eilat with the Levy family. We celebrated grandson Itamar's birthday and on Friday we enjoyed an Asian meal (at Giraffe) with the Levy family together with daughter Vered Ron who was also in Eilat with long-time friend Patisa Rasmussen (see News below) and daughter Sophia.
After dinner we enjoyed ice cream at the family's favourite ice cream parlor, Golda.
Then tonight Aviv and Limor prepared a fantastic dinner for all 10 of us us with delicious salads and a variety of meat grilled by Aviv.

  • Patisa Rasmussen was our daughter Vered's best friend when we lived in the Virgin Islands, and we consider her part of our family. Vered and Patisa have kept up contact during the years: Patisa came to Vered's wedding and they regularly see each other, in Denmark or in Israel. See also here when Patisa and her daughter Sophia visted Israel and here when we met them in Denmark.
  • I spent most of this week fixing up our garden, front and back. Seeds planted, water system re-installed and working, my back aching.
  • We have seen the opera The Marriage of Figaro, with its twists and turns, about 3 or 4 times. We saw it again this week and this time we more or less understood what was going on!
  • The Segolis are on vacation and spending time with Mikhal's sister Ofi in Miami, USA. 

2nd April 2022
Lunch with friends
Lunch in Netanya with friends
From left, clockwise: Colin Kessel, Louise Kessel, Geoff Bethlehem, Binny Blass, Steve Blass, Doreen, Pam Bethlehem (in front)

We invited some old friends to lunch today at our house in Netanya this afternoon. We have so many events and memories in common from our days when we were young in South Africa that it is always a special pleasure to meet again. Colin and Geoff were at school together, as were Louise and Binny, Steve and I were at university together and we were all members of the Habonim youth movement.
Later Maureen Fain, also a Habonim member who was at school with Doreen joined us.
A special surprise was a drop-in visit on their way home by son Moran Segoli with Mikhal and Zoe.
More pictures here.

  • We read in the Haaretz newspaper about a small dairy on a kibbutz near us where two young persons prepare cheeses in the traditional Italian styles. We visited, were impressed, and of course bought some cheeses. See picture here.
  • The Rons are back in Israel and I've added two more pictures of their skiing holiday.

26th March
Cyprus snow

Doreen in Troodos, Cyprus

This week we returned from Cyprus where we played in a bridge festival. (see last week's Picture of the Week). We took two days off from the Festival, hired a car and toured a  little in Cyprus. In the hills, at Troodos, we were delighted to not only see snow but also the experience of falling snow. Click here for more on our Cyprus vacation.

  • This week the Rons celebrated the birthday of Dad Aviv and even baked him a cake. See picture.
  • Daughter Vered Ron and family are skiing in Europe and having a good time. See picture
  • Click here for some pictures and an account of our trip to Cyprus.

19th March 2022

cyprus festival
Cyprus Bridge Festival - Limassol 2022
Playing against a pair from Poland
We are in Cyprus taking part in the Bridge Festival there. This time I am not involved in planning or organization - Doreen and I decided to take a short vacation and play bridge together. In the first round we didn't do very well, but improved considerably with a high score in the second round. Tomorrow we play the third and final round.

  • Thank you sister Louise for sending us a lovely picture of your grandchild Rafael Dvir with grandfather Mellie Braverman.
  • Last week we had pictures of the Purim adloyada at Midreshet Ben Gurion. This week we have pictures of family members in costume as befits traditional Purim activities.
  • We went to Jerusalem to see granddaughter Lotem Segoli and her team taking part in the final rounds of the First Israel Robotics Championship. Congratulation to Lotem and Fata Morgana on reaching the finals and placing second. A great achievement  - well done! See pictures of Lotem and her team on Lotem's page.
  • Before going to see the robotics we visited Jerusalem's interesting market Shuk Machaneh Yehuda and enjoyed our shawarma in the freezing cold.
  • We wish a speedy recovery to grandson Itamar Levy who fell and fractured his arm. With a broken arm we not sure how much you'll enjoy your sick leave from the army.

12th March 2022
Adloyada 2022 at Midreshet Ben Gurion

Traditionally the Purim festival is celebrated by everyone dressing up in costume and  a carnival-like adloyada with a parade of floats, accompanied by music, dancers and costumed participants. And shlah manot, exchange of gifts, of course.  The adloyada has gradually died out but some towns still have one.
The High School for Environmental Studies, in Sde Boqer, puts on a fantastic adloyada every year prepared entirely by the pupils. Above is the float prepared by Maayan and his group.
See more pictures here.

  • We visited cousin Shirley Kansky (see Hershovitz/Levy tree) this week to wish happy 98th birthday to huband Nathan and  happy birthday to her this week on the Ides of March. We enjoyed the visit talking about family and old times. Shirley still has the Grandfather clock that belonged to her grandparents. Picture and more here.
  • Poor Alma the cute dog of daughter Vered and Aviv Ron. She once again broke a leg (and she's not an actor) - see here.
  • Granddaughter Lior Ron is now selling her delicious vegan spreads and dips. These include beetroot, butternut squash and cashew, roasted peppers, red lentils, chickpea, split pea, carrot and garlic. Everything is fresh and 100% vegan. There is delivery to Herzlia, Raanana and Kfar Saba or pickup in Herzliya. You can order  through Whatsapp 0549107103 or follow on instagram @hamatbilim_shellior. There are pictures and decriptions here.

5th March
Glzers - young
The Glazer Family

 The picture above of parents Maurice and Gertie and children Louise and Doreen taken toward the end of 1944 and is proof that both Louise and Doreen were once young! It's also proof trhat Doreen can sulk, and take a look at her socks.

from Old Pictures Collection

  • Last night, after too long a time, we were delighted to have most of the family over  for an 'Italian' dinner prepared by Doreen, Maayan and Vered, with Chianti brought by Aviv L. It was  moving to see how they were excited to see other and how they all got along so well. (See picures)
  • Last Saturday night we went to kibbutz Tzora for an evening honouring Mike Levine after 30 years as one of the founders and the director and visionary of the Israel Stage Orchestra. We remember how how some years ago we enjoyed their production of their original Fantasy for Monkey and Orchestra. We have known Mike since our South African days and Doreen was his madricha in the Habonim youth movement. At the reception before the ceremony we were delighted to again meet many old friends from our Durban days. See some pictures here.
  •  About a month ago I was honoured to receive the European Bridge League Gold Medal for service to bridge. (Click here). It was wonderful to receive this month's copy of the Israel Bridge Federation Bulletin. Apart from the cover there are some nice words in an article. See the front cover.

26th February 2022


Goodbye, Starlet

28 years ago we bought a Toyota Starlet. It served us well and hardly needed any spare parts in all those years. What a car! The body had many bangs, dents and rust, but the engine showed no signs of age. Of late the clutch was starting to give a liitle trouble but we still used the car quite a lot. With a road test twice a year and the costs of registration and insurance it just wasn't worth keeping. But who would buy a battered 28 year old car with stick shift and no power steering?
So with a sad heart we sold the car for scrap metal and perhaps spare parts.
  • We spent the weekend in Midreshet Ben Gurion with the Segolis. Aviv and family were going to join us but had to cancel at the last minute. Grandson Maayan outdid himsel by smoking spare ribs which were delicious.(see pictures)
  • While there, we had a chance to see granddaughter Lotem Segoli with some of her Fata Morgana team preparing to build a new robot. As the winner of the regional Robot Contest they will participate in the Israel Robot Contest. If they win this, they will be invited to the USA to take part in a contest there. We were very impressed by their work - they work to a plan and each prepares a part and then they put everything together. See picture here.
  • We also saw granddaughter Zoe's new very fluffy rabbit, Laannie. See picture.
  • How Covid has changed so many things! We went to a concert performance of the opera Tosca, conductecd by an aging Zubin Mehta. The choir wore masks even when they were singing.

19th February 2022

Jan Karski
Doreen sits next to Jan Karski at the Polin Museum in Warsaw

We have just returned from a very short trip to Warsaw where I checked the conditions and possibilities of holding a bridge directors' course there later this year. On the morning of our flight home we visited the Polin Museum of the Hisory of the Jewish People in Poland. The Museum is located on the site of the Warsaw Ghetto destroyed by the Nazis. (See a picture of the Monument to the Ghetto Heroes in the grounds of the Museum.). The Museum is most interesting and extremely large. Although we spent 3 hours there, we only saw about 1/4 of the exhibits. I admit I had never heard of Jan Karski but Doreen knew all about him, and his story deserves to be better known. Doreen was happy to sit on the seat next to his statue in the grounds of the museum.

The following biography of Jan Karski is condensed from  Ushman Encyclopedia

Jan Karski was born Jan Kozielewski to a Roman Catholic family in Lodz in 1914. …..
World War II began in September 1939, interrupting Karski’s promising career in the diplomatic service.... At the start of the war, Karski joined the Polish army, but was taken prisoner by the Soviets at the end of September. …..In November, as part of a prisoner exchange between the Soviets and Germans, Karski landed in German custody. He was briefly held by the Germans in a POW camp in Radom, but managed to escape. From there, Karski made his way to Warsaw, where he joined the Polish underground resistance movement... Karski conveyed secret information between the resistance and the Polish government-in-exile headquartered in London. …..

In late 1942, Karski was smuggled in and out of the Warsaw ghetto and Izbica, a transit ghetto for Jews being sent to the Belzec killing center. In both places, he witnessed the horrific conditions imposed by the Germans that had caused tens of thousands of Jews to die of starvation and disease. In Izbica, disguised as a guard, he saw thousands of Jews being crammed into cattle cars. Karski learned that the train was taking them to be murdered......

Karski then managed to travel across German-occupied Europe to London, where he delivered a report to the Polish government-in-exile and to senior British authorities, including Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden. He described what he had witnessed and reported the evidence that Nazi Germany was murdering Jews from all over Europe. In July 1943, Karski journeyed to Washington and met with American President Franklin D. Roosevelt to give him the same report. Karski pleaded for specific actions to rescue Jews. Allied leaders, however, insisted that Germany’s military defeat must be their first priority. 

In September 1943, Karski returned to London, …. In February 1944, he was sent back to the United States on a public relations mission. During that year, he gave lectures, wrote newspaper articles, and presented on the radio about the Nazi German occupation of Poland, the Polish underground, and the plight of Jews under the Nazis. 

After the war, Karski remained in the United States. He joined the faculty of Georgetown University in 1949 and earned his PhD from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service in 1952. He remained on the faculty of Georgetown University until he retired in 1984 with the rank of Full Professor.

Deeply influenced by his wartime experiences and memory of the Holocaust, Karski worked tirelessly for the rest of his life to promote Polish-Jewish understanding and to honor the memory of all victims of Nazism. In addition to receiving the highest Polish civic and military decorations, Karski was made an honorary citizen of Israel and was awarded the distinction “Righteous Among the Nations” by Yad Vashem. 

Jan Karski died in Washington, DC, in July 2000.

Condensed from Ushman Encyclopedia
Author(s): United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Washington, DC

  • On our visit to Warsaw (see above) Doreen and I found two interesting and completely different styled restaurants (and didn't find the Michelin Restaurant where we had booked!). See here. 
  • Fortunately we (=Doreen) didn't have to cook dinner on our return from Warsaw as daughter Vered Ron invited us to dinner with a full complement - daughters Danielle and Lior with their friends Oz and Gal. See picture.
  • Just before leaving for Warsaw Doreen, friend Caroline and granddaughter Danielle with her friend Oz visited an exhibition in Tel Aviv by artist Yayoi Kusana. See picture.
  • Maayan and Lotem have been planning to sky dive for some time but bad weather had repeatedly postponed the experience. This week the weather cleared enough for them to go to Sdei Taiman airfield just outside Beersheva and finally sky dive, together with many of their Segoli relatives. Here are some pictures.,

12th February 2022
lotem robotics
Lotem's Fata Morgana team in 1st place in qualifyer

Congratulations to granddaughter Lotem Segoli and her team for their accomplishment in winning the Israel robotics qualifier competition. They will take part in the Finals of the Israel National Robotics Championships next month. The team Fata Morgana is from the Ramat Hanegev High School situated in the Negev Desert. Lotem is the Coach, Mechanics leader and CAD (Computer aided Design) leader of the team. She and her team have spent months of hard work in all their spare time in preparation for this event and their victory is amazing and well deserved.

We are all very proud of you, Lotem. Now go and rest a little!

There are some more pictures here.

5th February 2022

Dani and pics
 Danielle and some of her pictures
A big "welcome back" to granddaughter Danielle Ron. Dani spent 3 months in the Galapagos and Amazonas as part of her studies in Sustainability and Government at  Reichman University.  After her studies and projects she spent time in South America where she was joined by her friend Oz.
Dani entertained us for some hours talking about her trip and studies and showing us some of her hundreds of pictures. We hope she will send us some of her pictures for this site.

  • We were happy to renew contact with Denise Israel. Denise's ex-husband Giora worked at Coral World in St Thomas and Nassau Bahamas during the period he and I both managed these attractions. Our paths crossed many times and it was lovely to meet Denise again after so many years and to discuss old times.
  • Aviv and Vered Ron joined Moran, Mikhal and Lotem Segoli on a day hike in the Ramon Crater.
  • I will be visiting Bucharest, Romania this week for 2 days to check whether there is a suitable place to hold the next Tourament Director's Course.
  • On our visit to Larnaca, Cyprus last week Doreen was facinated by an outdoor exhibition of 'trash art' - sculptues made from trash by Abdul Gany Bande, a refugee from the Ivory Coast.

29th January 2022
gold medal
European Bridge League Gold Medal

This weekend Doreen and I were in Larnaca Cyprus where I attended a seminar run by the EBL. At the dinner at the end of the seminar I was presented with the Gold Medal for "distinguished services to European Bridge". I was very proud to receive this, especially as the last Gold Medal awarded was ten years ago.
Click here for 2 more pictures

22nd January 2022
Gev Daroch Mikhal
Mikhal at Gev Darogh

The Segolis  took advantage of the temporary break in the rainy weather to go on hikes - today to Gev Darogh (Moran and Mikhal) and yesterday to Gev Zarchan.  Apart from the desert scenery there are  water holes (Gev) in the rock base that fill with water in the rainy season.
Click for pictures from yesterday (Gev Zarchan), and some pictures of Zoe 'exercising' on the rocks.
  • Many thanks to Roslyn Hakim for sending pictures of her grandfather Barnet Nickel and of his three daughters Ray, Fay and Sarah (Roslyn's mother). Barnet is Doreen's great uncle. Click to see the pictures  on the old photos page. (See Nochimovitz/Nickel family tree.)
  • We had booked to visit New York in the New Year and meet daughter Vered and granddaughter Lior there. The trip was cancelled but Vered  rebooked and last week flew there for business meetings. She sent us pictures of the cold and snow there. Vered  returned last night and is in quarantine until she receives a negative PCR test.
  • Here's Doreen's recipe for cauliflower salad with real or vegan mayonnaise.
  • We travel to Cyprus later this week for a two-day Bridge Officers' seminar.

15th January 2022
Daughter Vered Levy-Ron interviewed on Channel 13 TV

Vered was interviewed about her job as CEO of Syte, the world's #1 discovery platform of ecommerce. She came over very well as she explained what the company does. You can see and hear the interview (in Hebrew) here.
Syte uses visual AI technology to cater to the specific needs of fashion, jewelry, and home decor brands. You can read more about this here.
We are very proud of our daughter and her success.

8th January 2022
smile - 4 grandkids
Smile for the camera!
Maayan, Lior, Itamar, Danelle
Our first 4 grandchildren pose for the camera - taken about 15 years ago.

from my Old Photos Collection

1st January 2022

Hello 2022

Doreen and I wish all our relatives and friends a happy New Year. We're not sorry to see the end of 2021 and hope that 2022 will be a better, successful and healthy year.