Our final day in Israel was spent in Tel-Aviv with the country full of its citizens celebrating Independence Day. We had been out late (for us) the night before so slept in before making our way on our own little walking tour taking us through various parts of the city.
Even though we had slept in, we were out and about on this adventure around 10:30 am and the entire city was definitely still sleeping. We had mapped out a few points to go for coffees, snacks, etc. to see the sights but everything was closed- we finished our multi-hour planned adventure in like 2 hours- strolling through Rothschild, down the beach of Tel-Aviv, and so much more.
By the time we hit the water, the city was finally alive. There was some sort of air show and the beach that was previously empty when we’d walked down it just 2 days before was jammed pack and we could barely navigate. As we caught the end of the air-show, the parties were just beginning. We stood watching a group of very religious Jews dancing in the city square and got a great laugh when one of the foreigners tried to bring his wife into the dance party and they immediately shut off the music until she was removed- then music back on like it never happened.
We made our way down the beach back towards the hotel before returning to Rothschild street to find a place for our final Israeli-style lunch- another schwarma combination of sorts with some sweet potato fries. With the beaches being crowded and us needing to pack for our early AM flight, we retreated to the hotel to read by the pool as well as collect our belongings before dinner.
The dinner activity had been planned for a long time- Debbie’s Aunt Sheri and Uncle Gary had just arrived in Tel-Aviv that morning with Sheri’s parents and we met the four of them and Matt for dinner at a kosher steakhouse. With the family reunion assembled, we ended up with another tasting course and this one was even more plentiful than the night before.
We ate, laughed, told stories of the trip and caught up on how things were back home. While the service was pretty slow, it gave us plenty of time to enjoy each other’s company. Before we knew it, nearly 3 hours had passed and it was time to head back to the hotel. While we failed to take a group picture, I got one of Sheri/Gary and they got one of us (which we’re waiting on) but we did get a picture of one of the two platters of meat they served- after the round of appetizers and before desserts.
And with that, we made our way back to the hotel and tried to go to sleep as soon as possible as the alarm was going off in 4.5 hours for our early AM transit to Rome. So as they say, next time in Jerusalem (or Tel-Aviv, or wherever we may end up)…
The HoneyMeyers are off to the other promised land- the land of pasta and gelato and pizza! Italy- here we (happily) come!