East Jerusalem today is not all firebombs and our capital is not going up in smoke. The city is alive and thriving. It may be more socially segregated than other Israeli cities, where work and mutual interests combine to forge fluid and healthy daily interaction between Arabs and Jews, yet there is a discernible dynamic in the inner-city neighborhoods of the city toward what might be called gentrification.The recent completion of the restoration of the Ophel and the continued growth of the City of David have significantly altered the profile of east Jerusalem, bringing international and local attention to Silwan, Abu Tor and surrounding Arab neighborhoods. These neighborhoods are something of an enigma; they belong to the city, yet non-residents rarely venture past the main street of Abu Tor or the entrance to the City of David.I was curious to find cultural hubs of interracial activity in these neighborhoods, where I had hoped progressive Arabs and open-minded Jews might rise above political differences over strong Turkish coffee and honey-drenched baklava in hole-in-the wall street-front coffee shops. But unlike the streets of Rehavia, the mixed neighborhoods of Abu Tor and the mostly Arab Silwan are disappointingly devoid of commercial street life; I found little of what I was searching for.