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Esther, Rambo and Even Snow Mark Purim Holiday in Tel Aviv

The streets of Israeli cities were merry today with youthful Queen Esthers, Mordechais, cowboys and Indians, Rambos, and even miniature versions of Alexis and Crystal from television’s Dynasty series.

Youngsters paraded in brilliant sunshine and temperatures in the 70s on the first day of spring, which this year coincides with Purim, the traditional day for dressing up as well as reading the Megillah.

Israel Radio’s morning report on traffic conditions in the Greater Tel Aviv area, broadcast from a light aircraft circling over the region, reviewed the road conditions in Yiddish — leading the ground-based anchorman to give a Hebrew translation “for those of our listeners who were not born in Warsaw.”

Throughout the day Wednesday, all radio stations devoted their programs to “Purim spiels” and skits on politics and the Israel scene.

Children in Tel Aviv received a rare treat on Monday: snow in the street. But it did not drift down from heaven.

Operators of the Mount Hermon ski center had sent down truckloads of snow and piled it up in Malchei Israel Square, in front of City Hall, for the enjoyment of children who see snow in their city only once in 15 to 20 years.

Schools were closed Tuesday, to enable pupils to recover from late-night parties Monday night and to show off their costumes Wednesday.

But most Israelis could not understand why the banks were closed, also.

Jerusalem was to celebrate Purim on Wednesday. Being a walled city, it traditionally observes the festival a day late, recalling the time it took for news of the deliverance of the Jews from Haman’s persecution to reach the walled capital of Shushan.

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