Tuesday, May 21, 2013

A day trip to Tzfat

We went on a day trip to Tzfat (Safed, Sfat, etc.) with our friends from our building Christina and Justin.  We took the bus there and back.  When we got there, we saw a cool flower that didn't want to be touched, so it had spikes.  But isn't it pretty?

The town itself is very cute, with lots of little winding streets and cobblestones.  Here's Sam with Christina and Justin right after we found the old part of the city, which also has a famous artists' colony:

Here is the general gallery of the city, where many of the artists have their work displayed (inside, of course):

There was this cool piece with actual spoons.  You can't tell so well because the picture isn't great, but the spoons actually stick out of the background:

This sculpture was hilarious:

Some brands of extremely religious Jews don't cut their sideburns.  This sculpture is a boy whose head is held up by them!

Here's a view down the tunnel of a ton of art shops:

One of my favorite shops that we found had tapestries and weaving.  To be honest, we don't really understand how weaving works, but the things they had were beautiful.  Look at the process:

And look at this gorgeous tapestry behind the loom:

So I thought I might like to have one of those, until I saw that the price on one about a third as wide as the one above cost 6000 shekels, which is about $1650!  I'm sure there was room to negotiate, but still!  Even if you got him down to half price, that is over $800 for a tapestry.  Yikes!

Here's another cute street in Tzfat:

I saw this thing in a shop window.  The cool thing is that it's made out of metal!  Can you tell?

Here's another pretty painting I saw in one of the shops.  They had a lot of versions of this painting, so I guess it must be pretty popular:

Isn't this one cute?  These creatures are relaxing on a bench:

There was a rooftop viewing deck that we went up to.  Here's Sam on the way up:

Here we are at the top (Sam should really get some sunglasses):

There was a cool door that we passed made out of stained glass, and here it's reflected in the regular glass window of the store:

There were also some old synagogues in the town.  We only made it inside of one, since one was closed and we couldn't find the other one.  It was quite pretty, and reminded us of the synagogue we saw in Fort Cochin in India:

Then we went to a shop that does all sorts of crazy things with candles.  I liked these ones because I thought they looked like pasta:

And these turtles are actually candles, but I hope no one burns them:

They also had a few display cases of crazy things they did with wax.  There were a few that had graphic violence (I guess as graphic as you can get with wax), but there was also this Noah's ark sort of thing, which if you look closely has a lot of your favorite characters from childhood shows, movies, and books.  On the left you can see Winnie the Pooh with Eeyore and Piglet and Kanga and Roo, with Tigger on top:

There were also a lot of Looney Tunes characters, Lion King characters, Pinky and the Brain, and a ton more:

Then we went for lunch.  Our guidebook (thanks Jerry and Louise!) recommended a place that we wanted to try to find, but on our way we found another place that looked and smelled really delicious.  We decided to stick with our plan and find the place from the guidebook, but as we wound our way to it, we realized that it was the same place!  So a win overall, although it was not nearly as cheap as our guidebook led us to believe.  Still it was quite worth it, look at this Yemenite bread/pizza:

There wasn't a menu, just a guy who came and told us the one option that we could have.  I don't know if there were actually multiple options, because we thought we saw something different at another table, but it was delicious, like I said.  Here's the after photo:

One of the things I'm looking forward to doing again when we get back is making glass mosaics.  I saw this table and chairs in the tunnel with all the artist shops, and I really liked it and want to make something like it when we get back:

We also peeked into a shop where the artist will do glassblowing demonstrations if you pay her.  It didn't look like the stuff she made in the demonstrations was all that impressive, to be honest.  Here is the outside of her shop, which was pretty:

Her husband also worked in the shop, and he had a shirt that was made from a fabric that had the same design as some of the artwork in the shop.  I asked him about it, and he said that there's some website where you can design your own fabric!  Mom, maybe we should do that!  Anyway, then he got the fabric and had a local seamstress make it into a shirt for him.  The whole effect was sort of tacky, but it sure was a good conversation starter.

Jenn, I took a picture of another cool door for you.  I don't know what you're doing with them and I don't know if it counts if you didn't take the picture yourself, but I liked this one and I thought of you so here you go:

And here's some more pretty stained glass that was just the wall of some empty-looking building:

We had a really nice day!

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