2005, eh? What a year...
And as it draws to a close, it's time to take a quick look back at what happened throughout the year, particularly down anglosaxy castle way. Besides, who wants to relive all those moments that a million other blogs and sites will regurgitate? OK [ sigh ] we know Charles got hitched to the horsey Camilla, we know that Saddam couldn't find his pen in court, and we know that George W Bush has trouble opening Chinese doors. Things were much more Breaking News round my way...
The year started off pretty slowly, apart from the usual Corridor Land shenanigans. A 0% wage rise in January motivated a toe nail, the rest of me had long since lost the corporate spirit. The lusciously pregnant mrs. anglosaxy reached 30 in February while I called it quits on Anglosaxy in March (but restarted in June). Just needed a break. In the backgound, we moved out of Tel Aviv to smallsville, a 20 minute drive from Tel Aviv (when driving a Lamborghini flat out). The anglosaxy moment of the year came very early on July 6, a day sandwiched between London winning the Olympic bid and London getting bombed by terrorists. A pretty mind boggling 3 days for a Brit, though anglosaxy junior's entry into the world obviously had more of an impact personally. Since then, I've changed a lot of nappies, officially started the English school, had my parents over here for a quick holiday, had a cosy little Christmas, and got slightly disillusioned with life in the Holy Land...
I'll be honest - anglosaxy junior's arrival into my world has been the biggest event of my life, not just 2005. I wasn't sure that I'd feel like this, but it's quite amazing this parenthood malarky. I admit, we're having it lucky and he usually sleeps very well (I won't tell you exactly how well because you'll only get jealous). Would you believe it if I told you I occassionally open his flickr page while at work just to see his face...the other day I just sat there looking at one particular picture while smiling contentedly. It's easy to miss the little buggar!
Anyway, what does 2006 have in store for us anglosaxies? Who knows? Apart from an exotic trip planned for around May, we'll just have to wait and see what turns up...that's what it's all about, isn't it, seeing what life throws at you next?
Saturday, December 31, 2005
2005, eh? What a year...
Posted by as at Saturday, December 31, 2005
Wednesday, December 28, 2005
Apparently there is a blossoming gay community at Corridor Land. It's fairly obvious who bats for the other side round here, but O assures me there are a number of less obvious candidates. They have their own little clique, their own gang. I bet they bitch about the Corridor Land females when they get together. Let's face it, I bitch about 'em (the females).
Anyway, after O returned last week from her trip to Europe to deal with a nudnik (pain in the arse) customer, she was happy to inform me that the gay member of staff that accompanied her had made a list with his boys of the "doable" guys at Corridor Land, according to looks and personality. And who was voted Corridor Land Gay Icon?
"Thank you, all those who voted for me...perhaps it was yesterday's black t-shirt with the pink print? From tomorrow I promise to wear my trousers a little tighter. I shall also endeavour to flirtaciously drop my pen at every opportunity..."
Posted by as at Wednesday, December 28, 2005
Tuesday, December 27, 2005
As you know, I love Christmas. I especially love those sweet stocking fillers: Terry's Chocolate Orange, Cadbury's Snaps, Toblerone, Cadbury's Dairy Milk Buttons...need I go on?
At least after consuming this little lot and after seeing the bags of M&Ms O has left me after her little trip abroad, I'll have a pretty good idea what to put at the top of my New Year Resolutions List...(mmm, No. 1: lose a few kilos)...
And what did Santa overload us with this year? Well, apart from the usual socks, boxers, chocs, and stuff, mrs.anglosaxy decided to turn me into a blond. Yep, she bought a "wheat blond" hair dye kit, got me drunk, and then splashed it all over. Her idea completely, I didn't have a clue. Just a shame it didn't quite work out. I'm now a shade or two lighter than a few days ago, but nobody apart from O has noticed!
Blonds have more fun? Bah, humbug...
Posted by as at Tuesday, December 27, 2005
Monday, December 26, 2005
Saturday, December 24, 2005
Well, Crimbo is almost upon us (and yes the house is fully bedecked, in case you were wondering, pic below). The presents have been wrapped, the lights are a twinkling, and it's a desperate battle trying to keep mrs. anglosaxy from opening the presents before tomorrow. She's got her eye on a biggish one under the tree, but she'll just have to wait...
I have to say that this Christmas I've actually 'felt' it a lot more. Might be down to our visit last week to Nazareth, might be because of anglosaxy junior and my new status as a Dad. Not sure why, but it's certainly a little different from past Christmas's. Though of course, it's nothing like being back home...
So, I just wanted to say "Merry Christmas" to all of you passing by my way and hope you have a good one. I'm off later for something alcoholic (in the plural) so excuse me while I rest my head tomorrow. Hopefully back on Monday, probably Tuesday.
And if you think I've been splashing the cash, think again, pretty much all of the presents you can see in the pic were brought over by my parents back in October. God bless 'em!
Posted by as at Saturday, December 24, 2005
Thursday, December 22, 2005
She's your Christmas cracker!
Miri Bohadana. Possibly the bimboest of the homo sapiettes, but one you'd probably need for your Christmas stocking. Or even out of your Christmas stocking, whichever takes your fancy. I have to say, I've always taken a shine to her ever since a friend told me he beeped her with his horn because she was driving like an OAP and she gave him the finger in return. Feisty little number.
Think you'd better put something on love, it's going to be a cold weekend!
Wednesday, December 21, 2005
Tuesday, December 20, 2005
If someone asked you to find your own country on a world map, you'd be able to find it, even if it took you a couple of seconds, right? Right? I mean, seriously, how long could it possibly take you?
Well, last night, I almost called the Guiness boys. I'm sure a record was set in my classroom for the longest ever finger-pointing-desperately-trying-to-locate-Israel session. First of all it was Sweden, then Norway, then out to India, then back in to Germany, down to Italy ("I know it's near the Meditteranean..."), over to Turkey ( [ me ]"oooh, getting warm..."), down to Ethiopia ( [ me ] "eh?"), across to Libya...I couldn't take any more and pointed out Lebanon. A few seconds later we were home.
And who was the culprit this time (remember this guy?)? The PA of the CEO of a very big company in Israel, 30+ with 3 kids. I guess her kids won't be coming to her with their geography homework...
Posted by as at Tuesday, December 20, 2005
Monday, December 19, 2005
Right, Christmas is coming. The tree is up, the tinsel hung, the lights twinkling. All very merry. I love it.
One potential problem. Do the parents of the kids I teach want to see this? When they drop off little Johnny for some abc-ing do they suddenly envisage me turning into Jesus or even Santa? Are they thinking that I'm brainwashing them into becoming bacon-buttie consumers?
You know what, if there are any ignorant bastards who can't accept a bit of tinsel they can go take Johnny elsewhere...
Posted by as at Monday, December 19, 2005
Sunday, December 18, 2005
OK, so I have a new school flyer ready to hit the streets. Just need an eye-catching headline to wow the citizens of smallsville. As 2006 looms, I'm leaning towards "Start 2006 the right way - the [ name of my school ] way!". But, lame springs to mind when I read it...anyone got any bright ideas?
The flyer has up-to-now proven reasonably successful, with an average of one student a week joining up. Not too shabby, especially since they don't cost anything what with me sleeping with my graphic designer and printer (yep, mrs. anglosaxy), and me doing the delivering. And since there's only been one round of flyers, I'm well chuffed. Research shows that people only start being aware/responding between the 3rd and 7th flyer dropping in their letterbox.
Posted by as at Sunday, December 18, 2005
Friday, December 16, 2005
We drove up to Nazareth today for a bit of seasonal Jesus spotting. It's a fair old drive to buy a bit of tinsel, but worth it just to see the "Happy New Year" scrawlings in the window and to hear the Christmas carols playing in the background (sung in Arabic, of course) when bartering over the price of a lame plastic tree (when you get a couple of Santa hats thrown in to the deal, you know you're on to a winner). Anglosaxy junior also enjoyed himself and managed to charm the locals with his winning smile (from his father's side, I guess)...
The drive up to Nazareth was the scary part. What with the heavy rain that accompanied us most of the way up, it was "first one to 20" as we counted the accidents along the way. I've never seen so many accidents littered along the way...Feckin' amazing. Simply amazing. I've said it before and I'll be saying it again, but Israelis do not have a clue how to drive in the rain. Some might say that they don't know how to drive whatever the weather, but let's leave that for now...
Ain't it common sense to switch your lights on, take your foot off the gas, and keep a little distance when torrential rain is beating down faster than your wipers can wipe?
All I've got left to add is "baubles". Big, shiny Nazareth ones.
Posted by as at Friday, December 16, 2005
Thursday, December 15, 2005
Was down Nahalat Binyamin last Friday, having a pint or 3 of fine German ale, when I came across these guys...one of whom had Kermit impaled on his hand.
Actually very cute and entertaining, especially after the 3rd beer. And drawing a crowd non-stop for the good 2 or 3 hours they were playing (entirely in English, from what I heard). I'm not sure if they're there every week, but worth a listen...
Mrs. Anglosaxy said she wanted to take them home with her. Did she mean the puppets or the band? Mmmm...
Posted by as at Thursday, December 15, 2005
Wednesday, December 14, 2005
Finally got to see the second (and a good job I didn't see this website before watching it...) and final Office Christmas special last night. Pure feckin' genius. I know I'm a little late but that was a great warm, fuzzy moment when Dawn came back for her man, accompanied by the sound of Yazoo's "Only You"...
I saw the first Xmas special when I was back in Blighty 2 Christmas's ago, but had to fly back to Israel and missed out on the second part. Thanks to the wonders of the Internet, all is well now.
As I'm always 2 years behind, maybe I should start watching Little Britain now...?
Posted by as at Wednesday, December 14, 2005
Tuesday, December 13, 2005
Well, that's me and Internet Explorer done. Finished. No more. After suddenly crashing on me and failing to load again, even after re-installing, I've decided (OK, I was forced) to go with Firefox. And from what I can see, it looks like I should have done so a whole lot sooner...the tab browsing is especially cute.
Posted by as at Tuesday, December 13, 2005
Monday, December 12, 2005
So, the lists come to an end with this one...this could get very ugly. The absolute worst of Israel and why it might be a good time to get out...
1. The weather. July/August in Tel Aviv just ain't fun.
2. Israeli drivers. A law unto themselves. Worth blogging about.
3. Israeli women. I’ve met some nutters in my time…need details?
4. Plenty of rude fuckers who have absolutely no manners.
5. A “No Christmas” Zone. Some might say this is a blessing, but I miss Christmas…
6. Israeli music, especially that sing-along ding-a-ling Mizrahi shite.
7. Arsim (the chav equivalent).
8. Plenty of idiots with absolutely no idea what a queue is. Including those who make out they didn't realise there was a queue...
9. Religion vs the State. I'm officially an Israeli but cannot get married in this country.
10. Suckers (friers). And the eternal mission not to become one...
11. Politicians. Especially when faced with corruption/fraud charges. 'Nuff said.
12. Suicide bombings. 'Nuff said.
13. Religious freaks who try and dictate how I should live my life. Those uber-religious anglos, with their “oh, so superior” outlook on life are particularly annoying…
14. Racist attitude towards foreign workers.
15. Inept bureaucracy that depends on whether the clerk dealing with you actually got any loving the previous night (or year…).
16. The Israeli abroad. "But I vant my tomato cut in smaller bits, you idiot..." [ overheard in Bangkok ].
17. Spoilt kids/grown kids. That's right, live with Ma and Pa until you're 35, you loser...
18. Petah Tikva. Dimona. Bnei Brak. Truly godawful ugly towns.
19. Obsession with how much you paid: the second question always asked during a conversation is "How much did it cost?"
20. The ability to horribly astound me…even after 15 years…
Shall I go on?
Posted by as at Monday, December 12, 2005
Saturday, December 10, 2005
Continuing on from my last post, here are the things that are just plain bad here in the Holy Land. These are from a personal perspective, so don't take it, well, personally. It gets worse in the next post...Israel: the godawful ugly....
1. The weather (oooh, I could do with a drop of rain, love).
2. The people. Sometimes just too overbearing, too pushy, too arrogant.
3. Israeli women. Bitchy and possessive...need details?
4. Israeli football. I can't watch more than 5 minutes...
5. A lack of ability to understand British humour. Nudge, nudge, wink wink. Saynamore.
6. Tel Aviv at the weekend. The out-of-townies invade and settle.
7. Total disregard of personal space.
8. The desire to be "America/American".
9. Israeli beer. Let's face it, Maccabi and Goldstar are crap.
10. Shitty customer service. Especially the cable and phone companies...
11. Israeli humour. Hagashash Hachiver. Shhvvvunnng, right over my head...
12. Suffocating family life (the other-half's).
13. "Hiyeh beseder" "It'll be OK" - the Israeli attitude to a problem that needs resolving, but won't get resolved.
14. TV. What's with all the singing and dancing programs recently? Strewth...
15. Hebrew. Sorry, but it just sounds bad...
16. Lack of a drinking culture means Israeli friends drink one and are floored. Or you have 3 or 4 and people start looking...
17. The price of renting/buying a hovel (and I mean a hovel) in Tel Aviv.
18. The failure to appreciate the value of correctly written/spoken English beyond Israel's borders.
19. Obsession with mobile phones.
20. Price of toiletries: $6-7 for deodorant??
Posted by as at Saturday, December 10, 2005
Thursday, December 08, 2005
OK, so after my post a few days ago, I got thinking (ouch, it hurts to think!), trying to weigh up the pros and cons for and against Israel. And I came up with 3 lists: Israel - the good, the bad, and the godawful ugly. Today it's the turn of Israel: the good. All those things that are truly great about this country, at least to me. And that might just convince me to stay that little bit longer. Maybe.
1. The weather. 28C in December anyone?
2. Tel Aviv. A Brit I met in China was here a couple of months ago and he finally understood why I've spent so long here...
3. Tel Aviv beach, including luscious beer-suckling sunsets. Just a step away from the heart of the city.
4. The Med Sea.
5. The Dead Sea.
6. The Red Sea.
7. The late-night night-life. Many restaurants, pubs, cafe's have opened in the last few years and they don't close at 11pm...
8. Yemenite Jachnun on a Saturday morning.
9. Israeli women. More passionate than most...you need details?
10. The people. Once you get to know them, Israelis can be the most hospitable on the planet. But you have to get to know them first.
11. Relaxed dress code. Means jeans and t-shirts for moi.
12. Compactness. Means you can travel around the whole country fairly easily.
13. The Desert, complete with camels, Beduin and amazing scenery.
14. Snorkelling in Eilat/Sinai.
15. Freedom to express yourself. With gesticulating hands and arms.
16. Twist chocolate bars.
17. The drive down to the Sea of Galilee. And then the drive around it.
18. The perks my mother-tongue English can still wangle...
19. Humus and pita bread. And if you're especially hungry, the huge Iraqi pita bread.
20. The ability to amaze me, in both good and bad ways, even after 15 years here.
Coming next, Israel: the bad...
Posted by as at Thursday, December 08, 2005
Wednesday, December 07, 2005
Another pic I like, because there's a lot of small things going on. OK, so click it to get a better idea. There's the horse and carriage stopped at the red light, the guy looking out of the window (on the right), the crane in the background, the "Na na nachman" hasidic chant scrawled on the wall...is that guy going for a slash in the corner?
Posted by as at Wednesday, December 07, 2005
Tuesday, December 06, 2005
As a turkey-gobbling, bauble-dangling heathen, I'm feckin' amazed to see this little story. How far is this PC wagon going to go...?
"To ease fears of offending other faiths and excluding minorities, firms are increasingly banning Christmas decorations and traditions from the workplace."
So, I'd just like to declare that 75% of the anglosaxy household will be celebrating Christmas this year, including decorations and stockings (though I won't be wearing any this year. Maybe.). We might be in one of the most un-Christmassy places on the planet, but this year it's going to be momentous. A party is planned, a new tree has been ordered, the whiskey has been
opened picked up...
As I'm sure you're aware, the only PC round our way is the Bill Gates'-driven monster sulking in the corner.
Posted by as at Tuesday, December 06, 2005
Monday, December 05, 2005
Anglosaxy junior had a bit of a smoker's cough this past week. I keep telling him to steer clear of the B&H, but he does so love those shiny golden packets. Try telling a five month old that all that glitters is not gold...
Anyway, the nanny came up with a solution. Olive oil. "You mean he needs a sip of olive oil?" I said. Sounded reasonable, I thought. "No, are you crazy?! We need to rub it all over his chest..." With that, she yanked up his top, poured a liberal amount into her right hand, and started massaging away. He didn't seem to mind, and you know what, it seems to have worked. Some of these old wives' tales really do work. Maybe.
Probably was best that we weren't in the kitchen at the time, otherwise I would have been tempted to throw on some breadcrumbs and toss him into the frying pan...
Posted by as at Monday, December 05, 2005
Saturday, December 03, 2005
Thursday, December 01, 2005
In a desperate attempt to assure me that Israel ain't all that bad, mrs. anglosaxy has recently started baking her ass off. Chocolate cakes, roast chicken dinners, and now, to top it all, fresh bread...the one on the left below is decked with sesame seeds, the one on the right with finely chopped onion. She's a doll.
What with the nanny doing her bit to bring some Iraqi-type dishes (kubeh anyone?) into our lives, I'm turning into a bit of a porker. Right, better get off and start posting some school flyers, sweat it all off...
Posted by as at Thursday, December 01, 2005