Weekly Update: Haifa, Nazareth and Too Many Pens.

This week started with a well deserved three day vacation in Haifa and Nazareth. We were practically the only people at the hotel in Haifa, and in the Hula natural reserve, and we took a private tour in Nazareth, well before the holiday rush. Everyone was triple vaccinated, almost everything was outside, and we all got a bit of a break from a very tough year.

Water buffaloes in the Hula reserve.
Nazareth Christmas tree.
Haifa at night.
Ramat Hanadiv garden.


The week started on the rough side. I couldn’t taste anything on Sunday and Monday (due to chemo, not Covid) and my taste only started to gradually return on Tuesday (sweet coming back first, then salty and the rest) and it still hasn’t returned to anything like normal. It’s like someone turned my tastebuds way down. An interesting experience. Neuropathy was also very bad at the beginning of the week, but started improving at around Wednesday.
Next week is my 12th and (hopefully) final treatment, and then my body gets a bit of a rest. It’s carried me very well these past six months through all the treatments, and I’m grateful for it (yes, even though it has cancer).


I’ve finished reading “Everyone Has a Podcast (Except You)” by the McElroy brothers. I was planning on starting a podcast before I got cancer. I’m not sure whether I’ll move forward with my podcast idea now or not.
I’ve started reading Colson Whitehead’s “Harlem Shuffle” and it is riveting. He’s such a fantastic writer, bringing people, places and past times to life with elegance and style.

I’ve taken a look at the 2022 Tournament of Books shortlist and unlike last year’s list which wasn’t appealing to me, this year I plan on reading the books on the list in my own version of the Tournament of Books. That’s 18 books, of which I have already read the fantastic “Klara and the Sun” by Kazuo Ishiguro.


Creating an Inkvent post a day has been really time consuming, and I’ve gotten a sizeable amount of writing homework from my therapist. I’m also running a backlog on my journalling because of a combination of vacation plus neuropathy. We’ll see how next week goes.

Currently Inked

Too many pens, because of Inkvent. Also, a few machined pens have arrived and are waiting patiently for me to try them out. Thankfully I have a lot of writing to do, so hopefully that will help me bring things under control.

Other Things

The rest of my advent calendars are now on hold because a daily post for the Diamine Inkvent one is such a lot of work. My usual resolutions/yearly goals plan is officially off as I’m working with my therapist on planning ahead when you have cancer (doable, but tricky). Once I’m done with that I’ll have a dedicated post about it, because I have the feeling that it could help other people in these uncertain times.

Haifa and Jerusalem


This time in pen and markers. The actresses from the wonderful play “The Mystery of the Lost City Guardian (of Doom)” strike again.

Inktober 23: City Spirits

Done! This was a nice and interesting challenge. The characters in order from right to left are: Abaddon (Doom), Carthage, Tokyo, Rome, London, Jerusalem, Haifa, Tel Aviv.

IMG_3537 (1)Here are the past posts on the characters from the local play “The Mystery of the Lost City Guardian (of Doom)”.

This week’s long run: Running in the dark and Christmas in Haifa

I started running before 5AM this week, and so taking pictures wasn’t really an option. It was very cold, very dark, and I saw a night heron and some bats, but that’s it.

Sunrise over the Tel Aviv Marina:

Later on I went to Haifa for the Holiday of Holidays celebration, so to make up for the non existent running photos, here are some Christmas ones instead:

#Inktober day 1: Wadi Nisnas, Haifa

Drawn on location in Wadi Nisnas, Haifa. Super5 0.7 fountain pen, Rohrer and Klingner Lotte SketchINK, Stillman and Birn pocket Alpha. Will probably get watercoloured once I have some spare time – took some reference photos just in case.