Jerusalem is Not in Israel – Ask the USA Embassy

Renewing your USA Passport in Tel Aviv, Israel

A (not so) funny thing happened at the USA embassy today as we were updating one of our kid’s USA passport. On the form it asks for your child’s place of birth. We wrote Jerusalem, Israel.

jerusalem_usa_passport

The (very friendly) employee at the embassy must process hundreds of these passport requests every week. He asked us a few questions, in Hebrew since the local processing staff at the embassy are Israelis. He reviewed the form in our presence to make sure everything was filled out correctly. He then  asked what city was our child born, and we responded “Jerusalem”, he very quickly and matter-of-factly crossed off “Israel” from the form, so that it was plain to see.

I wonder if there are other cities of birth in the world for which the country is left blank on the passport application of our beloved USA?

Tel Aviv Gay Pride Parade

Herzl would be proud. On Friday, Tel Aviv staged the 11th annual Gay Pride Parade. The newspapers report that over 20,000 attended and the groups represented in the event included Bat Kol – Jewish religious lesbians (weren’t they called ‘Orthodykes’ once?), Transgenders for Change, the Israeli Arab lesbian group Asawat, among others.
The event capped off the month long celebration of Gay Pride month in Tel Aviv, which was an official part of the 100 year anniversary of Tel Aviv’s inception celebrations.

Nike Tel Aviv 10K Run – 31 Aug 2008

Nearly 10,000 runners lined the streets of Tel Aviv this past Sunday night as the Tel Aviv version of the Nike Human Race was run.  The race began at Kikar Rabin (Rabin Square) and ended at the Sportek in Park Hayarkon.

The atmosphere was electric.  The runnners were requested to wear the Nike red race shirts (with the number heat transfered), and North Tel Aviv looked like a sea of red shirts.  The organization of the race was fantastic, although the water distribution along the route was a bit messed up.  (Most intermediate to advanced runners wouldn’t necessarily drink at a 10k distance, especially at night).

The only spoiler was the incredible Tel Aviv humidity.  Although the course was flat, this runner was about a minute or two off pace due to the high humidity.  Likewise, the shear amount of bodies moving within the marked paths was nearly impossible to run your own pace without having to move latterally or to fly over the masses in front of you.

Here’s a photo of your’s truly crossing the finish line.

Nike Tel Aviv 10K Run 2008
Nike Tel Aviv 10K Run 2008

All in all, a big Kudos to Nike, the race organizers, Tel Aviv, and to my fellow 10,000 runners, for a wonderful evening.

Here’s the Nike Running website in Israel where you can get more information about this event.