Archive | July 2013

so close I can taste it

On Thursday I should have a life again, at least for a couple of weeks until the moed bets. I’m going through the final onslaught of mega-grading and currently have no life, no brain, and no energy. I’m not sure I’ll get any sleep tonight but hope springs eternal (as well as fear I will oversleep). I’ve got to bring in a massive whack of exams and papers tomorrow. I’ve got another 5 or 6 hours of grading to put in (5 or 6, yes hope does spring eternal) and am about to take a break and eat something. That could be deadly and put me in a coma but I’ve been putting it off all day for fear of going comatose with food and now I’m so ravenous I can’t think straight.

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Egypt’s govt views Palestinian cause as ‘hostile’

Well this is good news! Reuters reports:

(Reuters) – Egyptian authorities have detained deposed President Mohamed Mursi for 15 days over an array of accusations, including killing soldiers and conspiring with the Palestinian group Hamas, the state news agency said on Friday.

The report came just hours before millions of Egyptians were expected to take to the streets in mass rallies for and against Egypt’s first freely elected leader, who was ousted by the military on July 3.

Friday’s step provided legal grounds for the continued detention of Mursi, who has been held by the military since he was ousted. The charges relate to his escape, along with other top Brotherhood leaders, from a prison north of Cairo.

The report on the state news agency said investigating judge Hassan Samir had confronted Mursi with evidence during his questioning. It did not say when or where he had been questioned.

A spokesman for the Muslim Brotherhood, which says the army has staged a coup against the democratically elected head of state, described the accusations as “ridiculous”. Gehad El-Haddad said the move marked the return of the “old regime”.

Mursi and many other Brotherhood leaders were rounded up by the authorities during the 2011 uprising that swept Hosni Mubarak from power.

The accusations listed against Mursi included arson, destruction of prison records and “collaboration with Hamas to undertake aggressive acts in the country, attacking police facilities, officers and soldiers”.

It also accused him of “killing some prisoners, officers and soldiers deliberately and with prior intent”. It added the accusation of “kidnapping some officers and soldiers”.

The authorities have issued a gag order stipulating the media may only publish official statements on the case, citing the secrecy of the investigations and national security.

Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said the probe marked a “grave development”, adding that the new government “viewed the Palestinian cause as hostile”.

Oh my aubergine!

Some pics from the garden 🙂 Is this not one beautiful eggplant growing!
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Yeah, I’m so proud of my little aubergine that I had to take a second picture of the plant. You can see one of the marigolds, a volunteer tomato plant, and another of the aubergine plants in this one as well:
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This is the ‘flower garden’ that I created and that my maniac midnight gardening elderly neighbour put a serious hurting on. Along the wall is a whole string of aubergine plants. In the pot are two bell pepper seedlings and along the front…well the only two surviving mignon dwarf dahlias. Until the neighbour tromped and dug about, they had been like pretty maids all in row down the entire row. I’m planning to put some more in after I grow the seedlings up.
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We now have not only garden cats but garden kittens (sigh). Yeah at least 2 and I think 3 fourish-week olds, feral as march hares, are scooting about the place.

This weekend I plan to set out the five cucumber seedlings and some of the bell pepper seedlings. It is a good thing a ton of the bells cropped up from that grocery store pepper’s seeds because five of the seedlings I set out last week got eaten by ants and other garden unfriendlies. Black ants also ate up all of the black-eyed susan and catnip seeds I’d planted. It was like a whole big black ant convention center in those beds.

Maybe Lod…maybe another country…

On Monday I go to see the property in Lod that is going for only 50k U.S. It is an actual stand-alone house with its own private yard. The deal with the other six apartments/properties I’ve found that were in my “under 130k” budget is that they all require the full sum in cash upfront– you can’t get them if you need a mortgage no matter how big or small the needed mortgage might be. With 50k I could buy this sucker outright but I can’t buy anything more than 50k outright, or put anything more than 50k down. Putting 50k down, I can’t afford anything here above 130k with a mortgage and that is seriously pushing things.

I’m really starting to think about yerida for the first time.

a kitchen sink post

This past weekend I was just totally wiped out and I expect to wipe out this coming weekend too — maybe I can manage to do it at the beach, though. I’ve not been yet this summer. Today was a totally full day and an expensive one too. I had to get the exams graded and turned in by 1 and that meant taking a taxi there. But I also had to meet with a student in Tel Aviv at 2 and so that meant having the taxi wait and then take me to my Tel Aviv meeting, getting there just in time. Dude, I hate seeing money drive away.

I had a tutoring session scheduled at 4 but the kiddo called and asked if we could push it back until 6 and I was fine with that, hanging out and grading in between — only, the kiddo then called back at nearly 6 and canceled entirely. Argh.

At home I did kitty feeding and garden watering. There are now several eggplants on the aubergine plant, the sweet pepper also has several bells on it and is still flowering, and the hot pepper that gets a bit of shade of flowering. The other two hot peppers that are in seriously baking sun most of the day –aren’t these things supposed to like hot sun?! — are really wilty and sad looking. I’ve got to find time to do some work on the compost piles.

Tomorrow morning I have a ton of errands to run, including taking Mousie in for his shot. The poor little fellow can’t eat at all and is just sleeping on the couch and occasionally gawping in pain when his own spit hurts him. Then I am going to have to grade like a mad woman.

I’ve got tendonitis in both ankles and that seriously sucks. I hate it when it flares up. Usually it is just one ankle at a time but this is a double whammy. It makes walking so not fun.

I just saw a house listed for sale in Lod for 50k. Dollars. Seriously, 180,000 sheks. I shipped off an email to the agent like immediately, natch, but I think something has to be not correct with this picture. For one thing, it is a HOUSE — a slightly more than 150 sq meter house — with a private YARD (yard is small but big enough for a decent sized veggie garden and fenced cat storage structure). So long as the darn thing hasn’t been condemned with walls and roof in danger of falling in on me, I WANT it. Oh baby do I want it –that is an insane price. I might even want it if it has been condemned.

There is a cat that has been crying for two hours now. I thought it was one of mine. I went all around the apartment seeking out and counting my cats. I couldn’t find one. I got to 16 and was like, ok, let’s locate them again…yeah 16. I couldn’t for the life of me remember which one I’d not seen. I went outside again but it was not one of the outside cats in distress and my missing one hadn’t escaped– the crying is very definitely coming from an apartment on my side of the building. Then I remembered the folks upstairs got a cat a few weeks ago and had all sorts of pet-happy-making stuff delivered. I finally found my missing one –Tzeekada had climbed into my armoire, knocked a few dresses off their hangers, and curled up among them.

Ok, off to cook potatoes for dinner and do some more grading.

The Friday wipe-out

I feared I was going to totally wipe out today and I really did. I slept until after 9 and then did basic stuff like pilling and feeding Little Mouse, Mischa and Tovi, fighting off the hoards of non-sick kitties that want their wet food, ordering more food and litter, and washing the dishes. I went to the store and managed to forget the most important item: COFFEE. I did phone consults with three students between recycling the plastic, taking down the trash, and putting a pile of stuff on the compost.

Then I had a major freak-out when I found one of the pillars that support the building (my bathroom specifically, as well as all the bathrooms above mine) in great big huge concrete chunks laying in the yard and no longer supporting the building. I did not have Hebrew for explaining to the Vad and so dragged him outside and was like, LOOK. He knew. From his explanation it was either supposed to be laying in the yard or he knew already that it was laying in the yard but people are coming to fix it and the building is not in danger of immanent collapse.

I went upstairs, looked at the pile of grading I needed to work on, the disaster that is still my apartment, and I collapsed. I slept from 3:30 until nearly 8. Now I am wishing like hell I’d not forgotten the coffee, am avoiding looking at the grading (setting the alarm for 3 a.m.) and am about to mop the kitchen, boil the potatoes I’d set to soak this morning and clean just the biggest litter box and then I am going to collapse again.

Double Smuggle: Hamas smuggling rockets to Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood

Well this is a change of directions — a change in the direction of the flow of weapons from terrorists to terrorists, that is. For years, large quantities of rockets and weapons have been flowing into Gaza and the Hamas terrorist group via smuggling tunnels. Now a report is out from Egypt that Hamas has been re-smuggling the weapons out and into the hands of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood. From The Investigative Project on Terrorism:

A high-ranking Egyptian general on Wednesday accused Hamas of smuggling rockets into Egypt for use by the Muslim Brotherhood.

Hamas started out as an offshoot of the Egyptian Brotherhood and maintained close ties with the deposed Egyptian regime led by Brotherhood member Mohamed Morsi.

Maj. Gen. Osama Askar, commander of Egypt’s Third Army, accused Hamas’s armed wing, the Izz ad-Din Al-Qassam Brigades, of smuggling 19 Grad rockets. Egyptian soldiers intercepted the rocket shipment along the Suez-Cairo highway, which Askar charged was on its way to Cairo to help the Muslim Brotherhood.

“The confiscated rockets were enough to destroy an entire neighborhood, indicating they were on their way to be used in terror activities against the Egyptian people,” Askar told reporters.

The captured rockets are the same type used by the Qassam Brigades against Israel.

Egyptian troops also discovered military uniforms last Sunday that that Askar said were “enough for an entire army.”

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