This weekend, I went down to Be'er Sheva to visit my newlywed cousins. Just like the other cousins, they took fabulous care of me while I was down there. We hung out a lot and spent a lot of time having meals at various people's homes, none of whom were actually blood related to me. However, everybody treated me like close family. They were all so nice to me, even if it communication was a little difficult at times. They made sure that I felt included in everything and were just so warm and friendly!
We also spent a lot of time playing with Marley, their dog. On one walk with Marley, I noticed that the park had lots of trees that were dropping some sort of fruits onto the ground. Mirit informed me that those were dates. I don't think I had ever seen fresh dates before as we really can only get the dried ones in the states. If the trees weren't so high, I might have been inclined to climb one just to try one. (The thought of picking one up of the ground in a dog park didn't really excite me.) In other foodie news, I discovered the Israeli Wegmans this weekend. There is a Russian grocery chain that carries all sorts of non-kosher meats and cheeses, as well as international foods of all kinds. They had the bulk bins containing exciting spices, and whole area of delicious-looking prepared foods. I was very excited, as I often get at grocery stores with exotic ingredients. I was also excited to go to an art fair that they were holding in a nearby town. The various artists that were participating ranged from painters to mosaic-makers, and glass-blowers to seamstresses. There was also a lot of jewelry there. I found the perfect gift for my grandmother- a hand-carved wine stopper that was big enough for less-agile hands to work easily.
I ended the weekend glad that I went to Be'er Sheva, and feeling very much like a direct member of the family.