(photo credit: INGIMAGE)
■ THERE IS an element of sadness in every farewell, but perhaps more so at the beginning of this week when celebrity hairstylist Avigdor Lichtenstein held a farewell party attended by numerous clients, many of them well-known figures in political and entertainment circles, to mark the closure of his salon on Yirmiyahu Street in Tel Aviv.
Lichtenstein and his late wife, Jacqueline, snipped and styled the hair of presidents, prime ministers, mayors, Knesset members, fashion models, beauty queens and even people who couldn’t afford to pay a high-class hairdresser. Jacqueline, whose whole life was dedicated to helping others, even visited prisons to administer free haircuts. Following her death last January, her husband attempted to continue running the enterprise they had built up together over four decades, but regular clients by their very presence kept turning the salon into a memorial for his wife, and the emotional burden was just too heavy to bear.
Lichtenstein is not leaving the profession but is taking another route.
Following a two-month hiatus in which he hopes to soak up some vitamin D, he will start visiting salons in peripheral communities to pass on his know-how to promising young hairstylists. He and his family are also thinking of a suitable way in which to memorialize his wife. He is considering several options, all of which have something to do with social welfare.
■ AGAINST THE backdrop of the furor that was raised over the teaching on Army Radio’s university program of the poetry of Palestinian national poet Mahmoud Darwish, a street bearing his name was inaugurated last week in Taiba by Mayor Shuaa Mansour Massarwe and members of the Joint List of Arab MKs.
■ THE ANNUAL Goldstar Beer Festival, which started in Tel Aviv in 1993, when the Tel Aviv Port had not yet been developed as a leisure and entertainment location, will this year be held on August 17 and 18 and will be open only to individuals over the age of 18. Admission is free, and some 60,000 people are expected to attend. Entertainment will be provided by Mosh Ben-Ari, Hadag Nahash, Dudu Tassa and Hatikva 6. Another attraction at the festival will be the Goldstar Factory fashion show for men.
When the festival was inaugurated 23 years ago, there were only three clubs operating at the Tel Aviv Port. Now there are clubs, coffee shops, restaurants and ballroom facilities all over the place. The initial concept behind the festival was to provide a different beer-drinking experience to that in bars: an outdoor affair with lots of music and no entry fee. The idea caught on and has been emulated by other enterprises aiming to promote their brand names and products.
■ DURING ITS three-day visit to Israel, the legendary Jamaican reggae group Inner Circle stayed at the Dan Hotel in Tel Aviv, which has become the home away from home for many overseas performers. Hotel general manager Avi Levy personally took them on a tour of the premises to familiarize them with all that was at their disposal, arranged for all six to have rooms facing the sea and escorted them to their rooms.
Totally unpretentious, the group ate breakfast with other guests in the dining room, and their only request was to receive piping hot, freshly made cappuccino at the end of the meal. After breakfast they made a point of going to Jaffa to explore the flea market, which they loved. The group gave only one performance – at the Barby Club in Tel Aviv – and, before leaving Israel, told Levy that they had enjoyed the visit so much that they had every intention of coming back.
■ CROSSING POLITICAL, religious, ethnic and social boundaries, Women Wage Peace, an apolitical movement that grew out of the anguish of Operation Protective Edge, demonstrated on Sunday outside Beit Hahayal in Tel Aviv, where the Labor Party was holding its convention. The women, who come from all over Israel, are not proposing any specific peace plan, but simply want both sides to lay aside their differences for the sake of future generations. “Peace is not a utopia,” they say on their website. “It is the necessary foundation for the lives of the two peoples in this place, in security and freedom.”
Almost exactly a year ago, in the course of a hunger strike around the corner from the Prime Minister’s Residence, four of the leaders of Women Wage Peace – Dr. Rihab Abdul Halim, Lili Weisberger, Vardit Kaplan and Shelley Furman – had a two-hour meeting with Sara Netanyahu, during which she suggested that they might be more effective if they demonstrated outside the home of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.
Women Wage Peace is gaining momentum precisely because women from so many different backgrounds are working toward a common cause.