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April 25, 2014 / 25 Nisan, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘water’

The Kinneret Continues to Rise

Saturday, December 22nd, 2012

Over the past few days the Kinneret has been steadily rising, and on Saturday it rose by 12 centimeters reaching 212.07 meters below sea level, which is 93 centimeters above the lower red line.

The Kinneret is now 327 centimeters below its maximum capacity which is at 208.8 meters below sea level.

The Kinneret’s highest level in 2012 was 211.30 centimeters below sea level.

Kinneret Water Level Rises

Wednesday, December 5th, 2012

The Kinneret Bot reports:

In the last 2 days the water level of the Kinneret rose 2cm to -212.38m, 62cm above the lower red line.

This rise has been due to the rain that Israel has been having over the past 2 days.

Why Water Networking Is Important (Podcast)

Monday, December 3rd, 2012

How does modern technology help to solve the water crisis? How does it solve the lack of efficiency in the water sector around the world? On this week’s Goldstein on Gelt show, Amir Peleg of TaKaDu returns to tell us more.

Have You Made A Difference In Someone’s Life?

Friday, November 30th, 2012

Originally published October 24, 1971

A rose that I picked from our garden to enhance the beauty of our sukkah is so exquisite that visitors remarked that they didn’t realize it was “real” until they noticed the water in the vase.

Only the Almighty could have created something so perfect, I thought, as my mind wandered back to a time long ago, when our daughters (now married) helped to “build” the sukkah. How excited they were hurrying home from school to put up the decorations.

I recall a special day when the girls and their friends were having a get-together in the sukkah and, with spirits high, they sang the lively Am Yisrael Chai, the Jewish people live! A neighbor passing by stopped in, drawn by the spirited singing. “And who did the decorating?” she wanted to know. When told that the girls had done most of it, Mrs. Hochman said, “They’ll never get into trouble that way!”

They never did, thanks to G-d whose “Guide” for living (Torah) we follow. Interestingly, a psychologist in the police department – lecturing on preventing juvenile delinquency – said, “Keep them busy!”

Now, it’s our grandchildren who are being kept busy – building, not only our sukkah, but theirs, a block and a half away. Meals were divided between their sukkah and ours, so that the Sukkos holiday should be joyous, for this holiday specifically referred to as a time of joy!

How much more joyous is it when, by the Grace of G-d, not only are there children but grandchildren as well joining in the festivities, and one sees they too are following the righteous path. For not only will they never get in trouble, but also they are already contributing members of the community – being of service to others, helping when needed. For then they will know not only the joy of the Sukkos holiday, but also the joy that comes from serving, which was so well put by a young woman quoted in last Sunday’s News. She said: “I felt like all of a sudden I was awake, like I was really present in life. I no longer felt like a spectator!”

That remark was made in connection with her participation in “Make A Difference Day” – an event started seven year ago in which volunteers from all over the U.S. get involved in helping others, at least one day a year.

It’s a great idea, which ought to be made a “must” for students in the public schools. Perhaps it would have a good effect in those schools that are plagued by dangerous gangs [nowadays bullying].

As for the Torah community, “we have it made.” Serving others – everyday – is one of the most important tenets of our religion. May the remainder of this special holiday bring much joy to all, and to all – a “Good Year” – a year in which we will all “Make A Difference” and help to bring the Messiah!

Dinner In Venice

Monday, November 12th, 2012

Winter is almost here and nothing says comfort like a rustic Italian dinner.

Pasta e Fagioli (Bean Soup)
(serves 4-6)

Ingredients

1 quart hot water
2 or 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
½ onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, slightly crushed
1 celery stick, chopped
1 small carrot, chopped
1 cup of dried beans
1 small ripe tomato, seeded, peeled and diced (or you can use canned peeled tomatoes, drained)
Salt and pepper to taste
1½ tablespoon freshly chopped parsley or rosemary
2 cups fresh egg pasta, or you can use dried egg pasta (broken down pappardelle), or regular dried pasta.

Directions

1. Soak the beans overnight in a bowl of cold water.
2. Dice the carrot, thinly slice the celery, and chop the onion finely.
3. Heat the oil in a saucepan. Add the onion, garlic, carrots, celery, and sauté for 2 or 3 minutes.
4. Add the tomato, beans, and salt, and cook for another 2 minutes.
5. Cover with hot water, bring to a boil, cover, and simmer for one hour or until the beans are cooked.
6. Add the pasta and allow to simmer until the pasta is also cooked (for fresh pasta, usually 3 to 5 minutes; for dried pasta, follow the instructions on the package).
7. Sprinkle with black pepper, adjust the salt, drizzle with a little more olive oil, decorate with the parsley and serve hot.

Potato Salmon Terrine

Ingredients

3 medium/large potatoes
1 fillet of salmon (about 2 lb), baked or steamed
2 scallions or a medium onion
½ cup Chardonnay
1 lemon
3-4 tbsps extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Fresh chives and parsley, to taste

Directions

1. Boil the potatoes until soft, drain, peel and mash with a fork or potato masher.
2. Add the salt, pepper, wine and about 2 tbsps of the oil.
3. In the meantime boil the salmon for 15 minutes with the peeled and sliced scallions (you can also cook it in the microwave in 5 minutes).
4. Then drain it and chop the whole mixture in a food processor along with the juice of ½ a lemon, salt, pepper, and about ½ tbsp of chopped chives.
5. Combine with the mashed potatoes and pour into a loaf pan (9 x 5 x 3″), previously lined with plastic wrap.
6. Press the puree into the pan with your hands or a wooden spoon, cover and refrigerate for at least 12 hours before serving.
7. Unmold and serve decorated with more chives, and (if you like) some mayo.
* If you are in a rush, replace the fresh salmon and scallions with canned salmon and a touch of onion powder, but the result is less delicate.

Chicken Stew (Ezekiel’s Chicken)

Ingredients

1 chicken, cut into serving pieces
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, slightly pressed or minced
1/3 cup green or/and black olives, pitted
1 bay leaf
3 tablespoons mix of freshly chopped herbs (sage, rosemary, plus basil, mint or parsley)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 or 3 peeled tomatoes
1/3 cup dry wine, red or white

Directions

1. Rinse the chicken and pat dry.
2. Heat the olive oil in a large pot, add the chicken and sauté until golden.
3. Add the salt, pepper, olives, garlic, and herbs, and the chopped (and drained) tomatoes.
4. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring, add the wine, then lower the flame and cook covered until tender (about 30 minutes), stirring occasionally, and adding a little water if it tends to dry out.
5. Uncover, and if the sauce is too liquidy turn up the heat to thicken it.
6. You can serve it with a side of polenta, potatoes or rice as a main course.

Chocolate Hazelnut Whole Grain Cake

Ingredients

3 medium/large eggs
2/3 cup brown sugar
4 oz parve dark, bittersweet chocolate
¼ cup olive oil or vegetable oil
½ tsp vanilla extract or 1 tbsp DiSaronno liqueur
1/8 cup almond or soy milk, or more if needed
1 cup hazelnut meal (or almond meal)
4/5 cup whole grain flour (oatmeal or spelt or other; for a GF version, try buckwheat flour)
1 package baking powder
1 pinch salt
Confectioner’s sugar to decorate

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 350° F.
Beat the eggs with the sugar for a couple of minutes or until light and frothy.

After Sandy, Volunteers Crisscross Manhattan to Help

Friday, November 2nd, 2012

In a nearly dark corner of lower Manhattan, in an area otherwise known as Tribeca, Rabbi Zalman Paris stands tall, cellular phone in hand, to answer another call from a young volunteer eager to offer assistance. Days after Hurricane Sandy left millions across New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania and New Jersey without electricity, food or water, there are plenty of people who want to help victims and their communities recover.

From his window, Paris, director of Chabad-Lubavitch of Tribeca and SoHo, watched the storm hurl itself into the homes and lives of residents nearby. The storm prevented him from venturing outdoors, but the moment he was able to, the rabbi assembled a plan and a team to help his neighbors.

“Many organizations have joined us in our efforts to help those in need during this hard time,” he said.

Paris partnered with Rabbi Levi Shmotkin of Chabad Young Professionals, Ari Teman of JCorps, and Julie Menin, a candidate for Manhattan Borough President.

“We brought in a paramedic to aid the elderly, who with no way out of their buildings needed immediate medical attention,” Shmotkin relayed.

Menin detailed that she kept the 10,000 people on her contact list updated by email.

“People would email that they needed food, water, diapers and baby formula. I then sent an email blast to Rabbi Paris,” said Menin.

All told, more than 100 volunteers traversed lower Manhattan, crisscrossing the city’s streets to visit nearly 3,000 apartment units in one day alone.

One longtime JCorps volunteer named Jillian described her experience as “eye opening.” More than 100 volunteers assisted the Tribeca effort.

“Today we visited some housing developments of the lower east side to bring food and water to the elderly and disabled citizens who are without,” she said. “You really become thankful for what you do have during a time like this.”

With the Sabbath approaching, they are hoping that the electricity will be restored.

“We may not have power, but we will definitely be spending the Sabbath with the many people and volunteers who are here with us,” said Paris. “Although many fled the neighborhood prior to the storm, our focus was on those that didn’t have anywhere to go.”

Elections And The ‘Dust’ Of History

Thursday, November 1st, 2012

As Americans prepare to vote, allow me to hold up a banner with the words of the wisest man ever.

The words are those of King Solomon (Koheles 1:9): “What was will be, what was done will again be done, and there is nothing new under the sun.”

The famous Alter of Slabodka once told his students, “Just look how contemporary our Holy Torah is. Do you know how we ended up here in Europe? It’s all because of the words Avraham Avinu spoke in Bereishis 18, verse 4, when visited by three guests after his circumcision: May water be brought for you to wash your feet.”

The Alter, citing Rashi, said the command was carried out by an assistant and so God repaid Avraham’s offspring through an assistant (Moshe), for the Torah states (Bamidbar 20:21): “And Moshe lifted his staff and hit the rock.”

The Alter explained that the nation of Israel received water in the desert through an assistant rather than directly from God Himself, and Moshe, the assistant who hit the rock instead of speaking to it as he had been commanded, was punished by not being allowed to enter Israel.

We know that if Moshe had led the people into the Holy Land, the Messiah would have immediately come and we would never have gone into exile. And so, the Alter concluded, he and his students were in Slabodka because Avraham did not properly honor his guests by personally bringing the water.

For the same reason, Jews find themselves in America, and they are about to vote in an important presidential election.

Let’s stay with the pasuk: Avraham needed water for his guests to wash their feet. Rashi says he thought they were nomads who worshiped the dust of their feet, and he wanted them to remove that dust before they were to enter his home.

Now, this can’t be taken literally. Who in the world would worship foot dust?

There are two words for dust in Hebrew: ofor, as in our daily prayer “May [I reach a level of] my soul [being] humble like dust – k’ofor – in every situation; and ahvahk, meaning powder, a word associated with battle, as in the struggle – vayeh’ovek – of Yaakov Avinu with the angel of Eisav. It essentially means kicking up dust in battle.

In our day there are Arabs who glorify gunpowder and the powders associated with bomb-making.

Father Abraham suspected that the disguised angels were people who glorified armed struggle. He would allow them into his home only after they “came clean.”

Our president is in complete denial and has been throughout his term in office. He went to Cairo in 2009, just after he began his presidency, to decry the measures taken by previous U.S. presidents in dealing with the reality of the “powders” of jihad, and just recently at the UN he was in complete denial of the horrific terrorist attack on our Libyan embassy and the killing of four American heroes, claiming the attack was caused by hurt feelings on the part of Muslims who had been offended by a clip on YouTube.

Prime Minister Netanyahu, for his part, using a diagram of an old-fashioned “powder”-filled cannon ball, gave the world a lesson in history.

I have already voted, at the OU Israel Center in Jerusalem, to replace the powder of war with the dust of humility.

May God bless America and its people and give us all the wisdom to make the right choice at the polling booth – the wisdom to return our great nation to its rightful position as the world’s guardian of peace and freedom.

Jewish Communities Among Dozens Decimated By Hurricane Sandy

Thursday, November 1st, 2012

“It’s like a war zone,” said Rabbi Akiva Eisenstadt, surveying the damage in Manhattan Beach, a day after Hurricane Sandy swept through New York. “It’s beyond anything anyone has ever seen.”

Manhattan Beach, on the southern tip of Brooklyn, was one of several communities in the tri-state area pummeled by the storm, which caused, across the eastern coast of the country, an estimated $20 billion in property damage and left at least 55 Americans dead and 8.2 million without power.

By Wednesday, Manhattan had still only partially recovered from the super storm as much of the mass transit system that transports millions into the city daily remained shut down. Some experts estimate it will take a week or more before service returns to normal.

Simply pumping all the water that flooded New York’s subway stations and tunnels may take several days. Engineers will then have to assess the infrastructure’s structural soundness. Some fear the corrosive salt water may have also destroyed electrical switches, lights, and the power-conducting third rail.

Metropolitan Transportation Authority Chairman Joseph J. Lhota said Tuesday, “The New York City subway system is 108 years old, but it has never faced a disaster as devastating as what we experienced last night.”

Even New York’s Stock Exchange remained closed Tuesday – its first multi-day, weather-related closure since 1888.

While most of the reports from several communities in New York City – such as Washington Heights, Midwood, Boro Park and Crown Heights – only weathered streets blocked by downed trees and power outages, others sustained a high percentage of homes with massive damage.

Shorefront areas in lower Brooklyn experienced catastrophe. “Two of my friends who lived in ranches lost everything they had,” said Ari Epstein, a resident of Manhattan Beach, where the water filled the streets up to six feet above street level. On Tuesday, after the water had receded, an oily muddy residue remained on every block. Virtually every house in the neighborhood, Epstein said, suffered extensive water damage, destroying furniture and myriads of expensive and sentimental household items. “It’s crazy, unbelievable.”

Rabbi Eisenstadt, who serves as rosh kollel of Manhattan Beach’s Community Kollel, said one waterfront house was on the market before the storm for $9.5 million. Now, “his whole property is destroyed.”

Even Hatzolah was powerless in the neighborhood. The rescue organization received at least two calls about electrical fires but could not respond, a Hatzolah member told The Jewish Press. The roads were simply inaccessible.

Sea Gate, Brooklyn sustained major damage.
(Photo credit: Dee Voch)

In nearby Sea Gate, an area that was similarly overwhelmed by water, one Jewish man survived the storm on top of a garbage truck, an official from the volunteer Chaverim organization reported. The man declined to evacuate when asked; by the time he changed his mind and started driving away, water blocked his path. Seeking higher ground, he spotted a nearby garbage truck and climbed on top of it. Freezing from the cold weather, he wrapped himself in his tallis, the Chaverim official said.

The water also filled parts of Woodmere and North Woodmere, on Long Island, where many homes were almost completely underwater and many residents had to be rescued by National Guard boats.

Summing up the conditions of the Five Towns, Gabriel Boxer, a resident of Hewlett, posted on Facebook: “The entire 5 Towns smells like salt water.”

In addition to the mass flooding and power outages, some suffered from storm-related fires. Rabbi Yossi Serebryanski said two cars exploded from downed electrical wires near his house in Canarsie, Brooklyn. Several other fires blazed on nearby blocks with fire trucks scrambling to get to them. Eventually, firemen took down several power lines to prevent further fires from erupting. Rabbi Serebryanski emptied his refrigerator and headed to relatives in Crown Heights, Brooklyn.

Fires also destroyed more than 100 homes in Breezy Point, Queens. Among them was the residence of Rep. Bob Turner (R-NY).

Bayswater, Queens also suffered greatly. Resident Annette Turner said she has no idea when she will be able to return home after the peninsula community was overwhelmed by water. Among the area’s victims was the Agudah of Bayswater, which was completely destroyed – just one week after the shul had finished repairing damage sustained in last year’s Hurricane Irene storm.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/us-news/ny/jewish-communities-among-dozens-decimated-by-hurricane-sandy/2012/11/01/

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