Guachimontones – World’s Only Circular Pyramids Near Guadalajara

Guachimontones is probably one of the most interesting archeological sites in Jalisco, Mexico. One hour of driving from Guadalajara is all it takes to see the only circular-stepped pyramids in Mesoamerica (and the world!). Even though there are buses to the site from Guadalajara, we preferred the convenience of Uber (the cost was around $20). Upon arrival we took a guide, and started the climb up the hill. Continue reading “Guachimontones – World’s Only Circular Pyramids Near Guadalajara”

What does it mean plague? It's life, that's all

The Plague

I have been putting off reading this novel by Albert Camus for a couple of years now. Back in Haifa I had 2 hard copies of the novel – one that I purchased myself a while back, and one that I received as a gift from a friend. But I just couldn’t bring myself to read it. An isolated city going through an epidemic of plague. To settle in such a bleak world for weeks, while reading the novel, was something I never felt quite ready for. I thought I needed to build up resilience to get through it, or wait for some especially sunny period in my life, to offset the burden of reading. And this time has never quite come. Continue reading “The Plague”

4 Things I Learned After 3 Months in Mexico

It’s been 3 months since we landed in Mexico. During this time, from a complete unknown Mexico became a place whose faces, sights and smells we now recognize. We are only beginning to discover the rich cultural tapestry of this vast nation, the biggest Spanish-speaking country in the world. But some insights are already ripe enough to share. Vamos! Continue reading “4 Things I Learned After 3 Months in Mexico”

Tequila, a Small Town with a Big Name

Anyone spending more than a few days in Guadalajara, will sooner or later end up in Tequila. A small town 1.5 hours from Guadalajara, it’s the birthplace of Mexico’s national drink. Actually, Tequila can only be called Tequila if it is produced in the state of Jalisco, in or around the town of Tequila. Otherwise, it’s just a agave spirit. In our first weekend in the city, we boarded the express Jose Cuervo train and headed to Tequila. Continue reading “Tequila, a Small Town with a Big Name”

6 Faces of Guadalajara – Discovering Mexico Overlooked By Tourists

We came to Guadalajara by chance. Without knowing anything about Mexico, we were attracted by its manageable size (compared to that of Mexico City), a reputation of safety and cheap plane tickets. A composite of 3 cities – Guadalajara proper, Zapopan and Tlaquepaque, it’s a 4 million people urbanity, the second largest in Mexico. We spent here two months exploring the metropolitan without rushing. Our first encounter with Mexico, in Guadalajara I tried my first Taco de pastor, our 3-year-old beat his first piñata. And we made our first Mexican friends. Open, courteous and humble, mexicans don’t need a lot of time to win you over. Continue reading “6 Faces of Guadalajara – Discovering Mexico Overlooked By Tourists”

Puerto Vallarta, Where We Find Ourselves in Tropical Mexico

Speeding on the toll highway from Guadalajara westward to the coast of the Pacific, amidst fields of agave cactuses and withered corn, I couldn’t escape the strangeness of it all. How did we get here? A year ago, our routine life in Israel didn’t hint to any of this. Normal office job, a child, parents and friends were our world. Amidst some vague ideas about living and working abroad, nothing hinted that we’ll be studying spanish, and planning to live in Mexico for half a year. This conception just didn’t exist in our minds. Continue reading “Puerto Vallarta, Where We Find Ourselves in Tropical Mexico”

Captain Fantastic (2016)

My score: 4.5 (out of 5)   Rotten Tomatoes: 82%

“Captain Fantastic” is about a father and his six children living on their patch of land somewhere in the forests of the Pacific Northwest. Their life seems to be simple, pure and almost Eden-like. Devoid of the soul-numbing effect of consumerism and the distractions of online existence, they hunt, race, climb mountains, read books to fire light, play music and have thoughtful discussions. Ben’s ability to organize his 6 children of different ages into such a well-functioning and cooperative group is nothing less of fantastic. Continue reading “Captain Fantastic (2016)”

45 Years (2015)

My score: 4 (out of 5)   Rotten Tomatoes: 97%

Kate and Geoff are an older married couple who are about to celebrate their 45th anniversary in a week. Then Geoff receives a letter, notifying him that his old girlfriend, who died in an accident in the Alps back in the 60s was found, her body frozen and preserved. Kate knew about the tragic death of her husband previous girlfriend – there are no secrets here to be revealed, no skeletons to be found – at least not in the usual sense. And yet, what starts as an innocent walk down the memory lane, gradually becomes an uncomfortable examination that gets both of them to question their life together. Continue reading “45 Years (2015)”

Beginner’s Guide to Biking in Vancouver (including Routes, Maps and Photos)

Vancouver is probably one the most bike-friendly cities in the world, with hundred of kilometers of trails, greenways and designated streets, all optimized for cyclists. Add to this the fact that buses and the SkyTrain allow you to carry on your bike, and what you get is a cycling paradise. So hop on, we are going on a ride. Continue reading “Beginner’s Guide to Biking in Vancouver (including Routes, Maps and Photos)”

Juan de Fuca and the Drama of the Pacific on the West Coast of Vancouver Island

The biggest island in the Pacific ocean, east of New Zealand, Vancouver island is a world of abundant nature. After spending two days with friends in Victoria, the urban center of the island and provincial capital of British Columbia, we wanted to discover it firsthand. So we rented a car and headed north-west. Continue reading “Juan de Fuca and the Drama of the Pacific on the West Coast of Vancouver Island”

Vancouver, A City That Shows How Multiculturalism Is Done

I am in a barber-shop to get a shave. Speaking with the owner, I find out he is originally from Fiji. I am at a playground, with Ayan, who plays with a girl his age. I start speaking with her father, who tells me that he came from Morocco about 10 years ago. My wife is at a drop-in center for parents and children, where she befriends a woman, who is there with her son. Her slavic accent discloses her – she is from Serbia. One of the assistants working in that center is from Argentina. The other one from Poland. This isn’t a promotional UN campaign. These are typical scenes from a daily life, here in Vancouver. Continue reading “Vancouver, A City That Shows How Multiculturalism Is Done”