♦ After more than a decade of in-depth media involvement and telling Israel’s story on the international speaker’s circuit, Aryeh Green, the founding director of Media Central, an independent Jerusalem-based NGO providing support services for journalists visiting or based in Israel, is stepping down. Green made his decision known to relatives and friends who joined him at his 52nd birthday celebration, which in a sense was his second bar mitzva.For 13 years, Green has been sitting each year for some 12 hours in one of Jerusalem’s coffee shops – most frequently Tmol Shilshom – and receiving guests who responded to an invitation issued to Facebook friends. Green treats them to refreshments.They sit around and chat for a while and then return to whatever it is they need to do. The constant stream of people seldom amounts to more than a dozen sitting around at any given time, but the system enables him to interact with each and every person who comes to wish him well.Last week, there were more than 50, many of whom toasted his health with wine that he produces himself. Green has been an amateur vintner for several years and is seriously considering going into professional production. He has a few other irons in the fire that have nothing to do with wine. A man of many talents, he has had a diverse career that has included working as a policy adviser to Natan Sharansky, business consultant, hi-tech consultant and instructor teaching advocacy skills to university and college students.♦ In som haredi and national religious circles in Israel, it is customary to stand up when a respected rabbi enters the room or mounts the podium to address an audience, but this is rare in most other Israeli circles. However, in Britain even the less Orthodox have been brought up to show respect.This was evidenced on Sunday at the Begin Heritage Center, where most of the people present were British immigrants or members of Britain’s United Synagogue Living and Learning Mission who had come to Israel with the chief rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the Commonwealth Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis and/or were affiliated with the World Mizrachi Movement.They stood up for Mirvis when he mounted the stage and again when he descended, and they did the same for Tel Aviv Chief Rabbi Yisrael Meir Lau. ♦ WHILE ON the subject of British Jews, the Israel branch of The Jewish Historical Society of England will hold the Raymond Kalman Memorial Lecture on January 27 at 7:45 p.m. at Beit Avi Chai. The speaker will be popular British writer and broadcaster Melanie Phillips, whose byline occasionally appears in The Jerusalem Post. Her topic will be “British Jews and the Left: What Went Wrong?” Raymond Kalman was a colorful Londoner and member of the Council of the Jewish Historical Society of England. He was also a popular figure with the society’s Israel branch, which he addressed during his frequent visits to Israel, where members of his family live. He was extremely interested in the history of Anglo Jewry, especially the East End of London, but was also an accomplished speaker on a broader range of topics related to Jewish history.His son Matthew Kalman is a well-known foreign correspondent who has been based in Jerusalem since 1998 and has reported for leading British and American publications. He is currently working with the London-based newspaper The Independent. He is also a former editor of The Jerusalem Report, a sister publication of The Jerusalem Post.♦ THERE’S a new player in the range of hotels where VIP guests choose to stay. The King David Hotel is still the No. 1 hotel for foreign dignitaries, with the David Citadel in second place, the Inbal in third place and the Mount Zion Hotel in fourth place. But now it looks as if the Waldorf Astoria may push them aside.This week, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe held his press conference at the Waldorf Astoria. It only takes one such event to set the ball rolling; and the Japanese, who are expanding economic ties with Israel, are the ones who have set the ball in motion.