The Uniqueness of Israel
How to Celebrate Yom Ha’atzmaut in Lockdown
If you have ever been in Israel for Independence Day (Yom Ha’atzmaut) then you will probably think of it as national barbeque day. Israelis flock to parks, the beach, and even the streets to hold celebratory barbeques. This year, Israel is celebrating its 72nd birthday and due to Covid-19, it is set to be very different from most years. However, wherever you are in lockdown, there is no reason why you can’t join in the celebrations.
To start with, you can use the extra time you probably have at the moment to do some research into Israel’s history. It is a young country, but plenty has happened over the last seventy-two years and there have been countless remarkable achievements that are worth familiarising yourself with. Whatever your particular area of interest, whether it is the arts, sciences, the military, literature, or anything else, there is plenty in Israel’s history for you to read about.
You can also mark Yom Ha’atzmaut with some Israeli inspired meals. Wherever you are, why not try to get your hands on some hummus and pita bread, or perhaps some falafel. You could even try to make them yourself, there are plenty of easy to follow recipes online and you are likely to be surprised at just how easy it is. To accompany the food, why not try a glass of Israeli wine. There are numerous excellent wineries in Israel, many of which have won awards, and you can even follow up the meal with a glass of Israeli whisky.
While enjoying your Israeli-style meal, you can put on some Israeli music for authentic ambience. Services such as YouTube and Spotify are full of Israeli artists and no matter your taste in music, you can find plenty to listen to. From Eurovision winning Neta to orchestras such as the Israel Philharmonic performing music by Israeli composers, there is something for every taste.
One of the main attractions of Yom Ha’atzmaut is the annual flyover by the Israeli air force. Unfortunately, this year’s show has been cancelled, but that doesn’t mean that you need to go without. You can find numerous videos of previous air shows online showcasing a wide range of Israeli planes and air acrobatics. If you are in Israel this year, then there will also be a special fly pass over the country’s hospitals as a mark of thanks to the medical staff.
There is far more that you can do to round off your home Yom Ha’atzmaut party. You can make Israel themed decorations, you could go and stock up on favourite Israeli snacks such as Bamba and Bissli, and you can even take a virtual tour of Israel on your computer to learn about some of the country’s landmarks.
There is no doubt that this year’s Yom Ha’atzmaut will be a little strange and different to usual. But there is no reason why you can’t fully celebrate Israel and all it has achieved while at home, and if you are lucky enough to have space, you can even have the all-important traditional barbeque!