Rechavia is the area of Jerusalem that is not Gilo. It runs from Baka to Nachlaot. There are many areas between, which the unknowledgeable Israeli citizen knows as Katamon or Talbiyah. But it is really Rechavia.
You are a tourist. Unlike the Israelis who live in Israel, you can afford a home here. To make a down-payment, on your next trip, do not pay for a hotel room for a couple of nights. If you don’t pay the tour guide, you will be able to go for a straight purchase.
The difference between Rechavia and Gilo can be seen by the lack of English being spoken once Gilo begins. That is how you separate the areas.
We are walking through a neighborhood right now. These are homes, even though they are apartments. They are still homes, even though you can hear your neighbor chewing. Some of the homes were built as long ago as 50 years. People live here. You will even notice, some people park their cars in this area. Chances are they live in America or France.
Due to the population of Rechavia home owners, you can always go for a leisurely walk and not have to worry about running into a neighbor.
For a real experience, go into somebody’s home and ask them to show you the nicest thing. They will show you their view. The ‘merpeset’ is the porch, from where you have ‘the view.’ This is what you will see from people’s homes.
In many other countries, people take you into their home to show you their collectibles, living-room set-up and their library. Here, the Israelis skip all of that, take you into their home to show you the other homes that are not theirs. In your country, you might know people who sit on their porch and look at the ‘view’ as peeping Toms. In Israel, Tom is accepted, whoever he is. In Israel, it is OK to look and say nothing. You also don’t have to wave, when showing your guests the inside of your neighbor’s home.
Showing the view to guests is a way to show that you are not the only one with an unfurnished house.
When your house is real ugly, this is what you show people. Usually the view from the merpeset is where you can see your neighbors’ underwear.
Lets go into my home. Let us have the experience. We are in my home right now. From here, you can see a view. You see? I have neighbors.
That person, hanging their laundry and undergarments out their window? That is because they do not want people peeping into their home. It is quite ridiculous. The neighbors have signed a petition and brought it to the municipality, due to the rudeness of that family. A new law is being passed that there should be no barrier stopping neighbors from having a ‘view’ and looking inside the homes across the way.
No. They do not having drying machines in Israel. How does it dry? Very good question. You wait till May.
The main goal of the view, also known in Hebrew as ‘nof,’ is to be able to see the Knesset. If you cannot see the Knesset, you have not made a good investment. Fifty percent of the Jerusalem people have a view of the Knesset. Anybody that takes pride in a view of the Knesset is a Jerusalemite, who is not living in the Meah Shearim area. If your home does not have a view of the Knesset, you have nothing to talk about.
I have a view of the Knesset. You see it? Over there. It is the…If you squint, you can see part of a square building behind trees. They might even have a view of the Knesset from their house too. I have never seen their view. I have only seen into their home.
And that is how you know I don’t live in my neighbor’s house.
We are passing under somebody’s Merpesset right now. Watch the water pouring down, right on us.
That is a good question? Yes. They have been waiting for us to pass under their porch, so they can hit us. It is Jerusalem tradition to clean water onto random passerbys. Why? So that you can mess up their day.
Kikar Tzarfat- French Square is located at the entrance to the Rechavia area, has a fountain donated by France, when there is water. Otherwise, this statue stands 10 feet tall. This statue represents water coming out of faces in a fountain. France is also known for giving America the Statue of Liberty. As France feels Israel is also important, this statues stands a good three and half meters from the ground. There is no stairwell in it. However, in its unique way, like the Statue of Liberty, this Statue of Face also has metal that turned green.
Gan Hapamon- Liberty Bell Park. Unlike Independence Park, 10 minutes walk up the hill, people use this park.
America had another cracked bell. Instead of fixing it, they gave it to Israel. Apparently, the Liberty Bell was donated by Pennsylvania. They had another broken bell and they wanted to get rid of it.
Across from Liberty Bell Park (Gan HaPamon) is Blumfield Park. These beautiful parks host a wide range of children activities, such as stolen wallets.
The fountain with the lion in it? I have no idea either. Is it a fountain if there is no water? Or is it a statue? Sometimes you can see children peeing in it. You can see the Lion Statue. A German chancellor gave this one. I know your tour book says it is a fountain, but there is no water. There is a European tradition to donate fountains to Israel, which have no running water. I believe the Israeli public would appreciate the gift of water more.
Montefiore had a wagon. That is over there. It ran a windmill. Thus, you will notice the wagon still under the mill.
And we are moving.
You saw the view? Excellent. And nobody even lives here.