jaffa, hummus, and mount arbel: our engagement story

I was extremely fortunate with my old job--it allowed me to travel all around the world for work. One of the places I was posted for a couple of months was Tel Aviv, Israel. My husband (who at that point, was my boyfriend), came with me...and while we were there, we got engaged! 

The where

When we were living in Tel Aviv, we decided to live in a neighbourhood called Jaffa (Yafo). It's kind of the old city area of Tel Aviv and it's somewhat separate from the modern Tel Aviv. Jaffa is the oldest part of Tel Aviv and is an ancient port city. We lived in a tiny studio apartment just off the street market and near a couple of mosques. 

The why

Josh and I had been dating for two years, and we knew pretty early on into our relationship that we were really serious about each other and that marriage was something that was important to us. We'd been living together for a little over a year at this point, so we had a good idea of each other's quirks and flaws and laundry routines.

Given that my family lives in the States and Josh's family lives in the UK, he felt that proposing to me in either of those countries would be unfair to half the family--like we'd chosen one place and one half of the family as somehow being more important than the other. So he decided to propose in Israel...which funnily enough, was kind of the neutral territory for us!

The how

We spent most of the day we got engaged on an excursion with our friends. We drove out of Tel Aviv and up to Mount Arbel--that's where these pictures were taken. It's a mountain in Lower Galilee, and the view in the distance is Golan Heights.

Then we drove to a goat's cheese farm on the Lebanese border that has the most amazing food--there's no menu, they just bring you whatever is fresh that day.

When we got back to our flat, we were exhausted, so we had our usual dinner (hummus and pita, plus some other yummy stuff) and watched a film. By the time the film was over, it was thunder storming really hard outside. Sidenote: thunderstorms are my all-time favourite type of weather. We popped out onto the balcony to watch...and he popped the question. It was perfect.


  1. I like everything about this story. I was in Jaffa many many years ago and loved it instantly and, like you, my favorite weather consists of slate gra(e)y skies, pounding rain with lots of thunder and lightning. I don't know how I found your website, but I am very glad that I did.
    Best regards, Ann


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