A lot of you may think of Israel as a sunny place, overwhelming in its heat. And that it is for the better half of the year. But then, there's winter. And no one told me about the Israeli winters before living here year-round. I don't know why I didn't get the memo, but as it turns out, Israel actually has a pretty lengthy winter season, lasting from about mid-November through the end of March. And it just so happens to be so very cold, chilling, in fact, with lots of rain, wind, hail and even some years of snow. It's not quite cold enough yet to get out the mittens but over the past week we have indeed needed our rain boots, rain jackets and umbrellas here in Jerusalem. It seems like just yesterday that it was so hot I couldn't sleep. Where, oh where, did the time go?
Back in the US, you might see cute clothing combinations such as the following for a rainy day. But here in Israel, it looks just a little bit different. How so? Read on and you'll find out.
The religious male residents of Jerusalem do not deter from their regular uniform of a black suit, black hat, white dress shirt and black leather shoes. In order to keep their pricey hats safe from the rain, they actually wrap their hats in plastic, forgoing an umbrella. The first time I saw this last year, I was stupefied. But now, it doesn't even draw a second look from me.
What do you think? Pretty interesting, isn't it? The religious girls and women, too, will not deter from their daily uniform. They will simply bundle up in puffy, long jackets that cover them from head to toe. As for the tourists, the rain doesn't really ever keep them away. No matter what the weather, you can be sure to find Jerusalem filled with tourists from around the world.
Inside the city, the streets are slick, so be careful out there! If you didn't remember to bring an umbrella, like me today, you can buy one for just 12 shekels in the center of town. Or, get soaked. It's your choice. I got soaked today and I learned my lesson.
Fodor's Travel Guide goes so far to say that Israel gets as much rain in a year as London does; now, I don't know if I would agree with that, but I can tell you that there are more rainy days then you would ever expect. Luckily, there's also 300 days of sunshine a year, despite cold winter temperatures. So, for the time being, enjoy the snuggly rainy weather coming our way.
It's the perfect excuse to snuggle up by the fireplace and sip a warm cup of cocoa from the comforts of your dry interior.
Stay dry out there, wherever you are!