"Be careful what you wish for." We always pray for rain in the autumn, because rain is the lifeforce of Israel from Biblical times. The recent past has been more drought than rain, and the Kinneret (Sea of Galilee) has been very low for several years now. I don't know, however, whether this is too much of a good thing, or not. In the south of the country, my son and his family, on the way to a sheva brachot in
Ashdod from the Gush area, turned back because of the severe weather. Parts of Tel Aviv have flooded. It's main highway, the Ayalon (along the diverted Ayalon riverbed) was closed for hours.
A video here shows how fast the water is moving and how high.
My daughter's apartment is just south of here. Downhill.
(And no, there is no separate swimming for men and women on the Ayalon. Or mixed, for that matter.)
The Times of Israel reported that:
Israel has experienced heavy rains and wind since the weekend, with flooding and felled trees reported from the Negev to the north. On Sunday and Monday, several train stations along the coast were closed for flooding, as was the Azrieli mall in the central city of Modi’in.And here's the best article of all by Allison Kaplan Sommer in Haaretz, an excerpt of which is below.
While flooded roads and downed trees and power lines have made getting around a nightmare, Israel’s largest water reservoir, the Sea of Galilee gladdened Israelis by continuing to rise, with 22 centimeters of water being added in the last 24 hours, according to Israel Radio.After several years of dropping water levels, the lake’s water level now sits less than 10 feet below its maximum, with forecasters expecting several more centimeters in the coming days.Officials in Jerusalem are also preparing for the possibility of snow on Wednesday, as temperatures dip below freezing in the mountainous areas of the country.
For fun, there’s everything from comparing the Modi’in mall to a Venice canal to a video of thrill-seekers floating down the flooded Ayalon highway on inner tubes, as if they were river rafting to poking fun at the hi-tech wonder navigation app Waze. Waze, which is being eyed for possible acquisition by Apple, is supposed to offer up-to-the-minute crowd-sourced traffic information. But it messed up big-time in the storm, leading drivers onto the flooded Ayalon highway. And then there are the inevitable viral works of photoshop art featuring the Loch Ness monster and a stray submarine lurking in the Tel Aviv flood waters.Amen to that.
Let’s face it: fussing and writing and talking about rain and snow is lots of fun, as long as you do it while you are warm and dry.
Especially when you know, from past experience that within a week or two it will be all be over, and you’ll be back in short sleeves in an outdoor cafe, and when you turn on the television the weatherman will predict, with a bored eyeroll that you can expect another warm sunny day. If only our other problems could clear up as quickly.