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Please note that the post is updated throughout the final tonight! Check back as the night progresses!
Tonight I’m joined by my son Yonah, who hopes Anouk wins for the Netherlands, my friend Nathan, who is just experiencing the ESC for the first time, and is still not sure what is going on, and via the internet Andi and possibly Ágó from Hungary.
22:01 “Kezdőőőőőőőőőőőőődik!” My current favourite to win (realistically) is Malta. My preferred win is Hungary. So if you can vote, just remember, Hungary’s code will be 17! While Israel didn’t make it, Ireland and Hungary did!
22:03 The Bridge! Yes, the one I mentioned before opens the show. And then some choir sings.
Tonight’s running order is the following:
22:06 Ágó tells me her conspiracy theory while ByeAlex and his vocalist and guitarist walk into the arena: Europe finally got so fed up with Hungary that they will all vote for ByeAlex, so Hungary will finally go bankrupt by having to host next year.
22:10 Petra Mede is an awesome host for ESC! I think she beats last year’s trio. Hi to Australia, whoa re watching the show live despite the time difference.
22:13 The real competition begins with the French entry. Since France is one of the big 5, who don’t have to sing in the semifinals, I’m looking forward to hearing the song live for the first time. Last year’s Corsican song will be hard to top.
22:21 Nathan’s comment on the French entry: Too bad it wasn’t in the semifinals. He wouldn’t have to listen to it now, because no way it would have made it! Lithuania was okay, a typical ESC song, and now onto Moldova. I like her dress. The song is mostly forgettable.
22:25 The Finnish entry is coming. She is Swedish. She is the one who kissed another girl on stage, causing Turkey to refuse to broadcast the final, disqualifying themselves for next year. So the highlight of the song is when it ends.
22:30 Another one of the Big 5: Spain takes the stage. It’s pretty weak when it comes to her singing, sounds kind of uncertain, though one of the guitarists has wild hair and a grin showing off 32 teeth. In one line. Anyway, I’d like to refer back to Nathan’s comment regarding Spain. I’m not 100% sure that the skipping of the semifinals actually does good to the big 5.
22:33 We are informed that in Belgium the Flemish and the French TV channels rotate sending their entries. This year it’s a French song. In English, apparently. I can pick out words. Something seems to be off, I could understand him in the semifinal. Not one of my favourite songs, but hey, it’s Ciska‘s country!
22:36 From the time stamps you can see that ESC is not about wasting time. The 26 songs, the voting and the announcement of the results with satelite connection to all 39 countries takes circa 3 hours. Beat that, Idol/Voice/X-Factor!
22:38 Estonia! Oh my, she is beautiful, the song is beautiful, and the Estonian language is beautiful!
22:45 Belarus sent a girl with long legs. And here comes Malta! The singer is actually a full time doctor, part time singer. He is a cutie with an unconventionally attractive face, and a comforting, bit raspy voice. He also has a lot, a lot of teeth! “Like tomorrow, she is always one day away.” OK, this is the second time I hear the song, but it has invaded my brain. I’m humming it whenever I’m not humming the Hungarian entry.
22:53 Last year’s Russian song, performed by the 6 babushkas ended up in 2nd place. This year Russia decided not to send a gag song. Thank goodness. There is something about the song that was really nice, but pretty boring: a predictable, safe ESC song.
22:55 I’m realizing I can’t remember who represented Germany last year. I am fairly sure I won’t remember Cascada next year, either.
22:59 Armenia! As you know, some of my kids are from Armenia. I like the song, and it will defintely get votes from my family. I can just see that Armenian voters are contemplating to give Hungarians or Azeris the fewer votes. While the Armenian-Azeri conflict is well known (Armenia didn’t participate in last year’s ESC that was hosted in Azerbaijan), the way Hungary achieved general dislike of Armenians is lesser known. Background on how Hungarian authorities proved they were idiots can be read here. Copied from Wikipedia:
23:11 Following Anouk’s awesome song for Holland, Romania’s Cezar is confusing Andi’s sons. Her younger son has been criticizing some female singers that they sound like men, so now they get Cezar to set their world view right. He is a counter tenor, and his operatic voice is in contrast with the background music. I think I prefer Mika as the pop countertenor.
23:14 Bonnie Tyler is representing the UK. Another one for the Big 5. She might be a gay icon or something, but can we please move on to something that has a pulse and somewhat contemporary feel? Only one more song after this before ByeAlex. Nathan decided it was time for a mojito.
23:18 Sweden. They won last year and host this year, and I’m sure they chose this song so they don’t have to host next year. No way of winning with this one. After following their national selection, I think pretty much this was my least favourite song.
23:21 ByeAlex is up next! He is number 17, and 17 has been a winning number 7 times.
23:27 ByeAlex must have gotten his confidence back after the semifinal, because he did a lot, lot , lot better tonight! Dani and Helga were also awesome. Yay for them.
Now one of my other favourites, Denmark is singing. One of my favourite things about Denmark is the hard candy with the Danish flag. Andi says the song and the singer’s voice remind her of Euphoria.
23:30 Iceland! Iceland is cool (©Jill). Thor Jr sings in Icelandic. It must be a love song, based on his gensticulation. Iceland. Country of recession, volcanos and some weird sheep head food that tastes very good.
23:37… and Azerbaijan did awesome again. It wasn’t only a good song, there was awesome dancing and the singer is very handsome. Greece, wearing kilts, are singing about alcohol being free.
23:42 Ukraine. There is a guy that’s 243 cm tall. That is tall. The singer is a very pretty girl and I loved this song in the first semifinal. It sounded slightly better then.
23:57 I think I kinda forgot a few songs… Anyway Georgia is on stage, and the next song is the last one, Ireland. Italy was all right, Norway was forgettable.
23:59: Only love survives. This song is growing on me.
00:08 Voting is open.
00:15 Loreen, last year’s winner, is singing… and she doesn’t have shoes on. I’d think that an ESC winner can make enough money to buy shoes.
00:20 OK, so this year, again, my absolute favourite songs were performed in the native languages of the country (since English is one of those for Malta). My top 8 in no particular order: Azerbaijan, Armenia, Iceland, Estonia, Malta, Hungary, Italy, Denmark.
00:23 Voting closed. Another funny intermission. I hope I can find that on YouTube tomorrow and insert here. It has to do with the Swedish mentality. It included the prime minister, who failed to put his coffee mug in the dishwasher, and a couple wanting to get their kid Christened, and now Petra Mede is singing a funny song. She is making fun of IKEA. Gotta love that!
00:28 OH MY GOD SAME SEX KISS/MARRIAGE REFERNCED!!!!
00:34 Eric Saade! Cutiepie.
00:36 Nathan is starting to understand, but he still has questions.
“But what does the winner get?”
“The glory and the right to spend a whole lot of money on hosting the next year.”
In the meantime: The winner takes it all is being performed.
00:40 Voting announcements start with San Marino: They gave 6 points to Hungary, 12 goes to Greece. (12 poiunts are the maximum, then 10, 8, 6 and down to 1). Sweden gave Hungary3 points. Albania is next. Albania gives Hungary 8 points. Netherlands gives 7 to Hungary, making ByeAlex have more points than in the previous two years. Israel is announcing! Ofer delivers a little speech in Swedish. We gave twelve to Azerbaijan.
Serbia gave 2 points to Hungary. Denmark is leading by 12 points. Ukraine’s curly haired host doesn’t deliver any surprises: Moldova, Azerbaijan and Belarus. Hungary’s Éva Novodomszky announces 8 points for Malta, 10 to Denmark, and 12 points go to Azerbaijan. Romania. Pretty blonde lady. Denmark gets 6, 8 to Norway, 10 Azerbaijan and 12 to Moldova, as usual. The Hungarian minority didn’t really vote for Alex, as they gave no points to Hungary. Estonia has no poiints yet!! Norway gave 2 to Hungary, 10 to Malta, and, wow, surprise (not), Sweden gets 12. Armenia… Hungary will not get any here…
00:54: Denmark, Azerbaijan and Ukraine are in the top three positions. Nothing is decided yet.
Italy gives 3 points to Hungary. Denmark is in lead still. Finnland gives 10 to Hungary! Yeah, the language family should stick together. Bulgaria gives Hungary 6. Ireland is way out of the game in last place with 3 points at this point. It’s very close in the top 3! Estonia gives Hungary 4 points.
Germany gives Hungary 12 points! Yea! Last year Compact Disco got 19 points, the year before Wolf Kati got 53. A fanyalgók bek@phatják.
Greece gives Hungary 2 more, Alex has 65. They give Azerbaijan 12, putting them back into second place… with still 10 countries to go. Ireland gave 7 points to UK, and we still only have 3… we as in Ireland. Denmark gets 12 points from us. The Danes give 10 to Sweden. They are still in the lead. Azerbaijan has a mathematical chance to win, but it’s looking more like Denmark. With 4 countries left Denmark leads by 46 points. If they don’t get any more, but Azerbaijan gets 12 points from everyone they might lose.
With only 3 countries left, Denmark has won: Azerbaijan simply can’t catch up. DENMARK!!!!
Ireland finished in 26th place with 5 points, and Hungary finished in 10th place with 84 points, getting 4 points from Croatia and 10 from Switzerland and 5 points from Lithuania to round the evening off. That means he got more points than the previous two Hungarian finalists. YAY!
Thanks for a great evening, Malmö!
And if next year Coppenhagen hosts (could be other cities, too), they just need to cross the bridge from Malmö to Coppenhagen!
1. Oh my gosh, Eurovision, you never fail to entertain! Poor Moran Mazor turned 22 tonight (writing this on Thursday), but alas, Israel didn’t advance to the final on Saturday. Hungary, however, was the first country to be announced as one of the ten advancing to the Eurovision Song Contest’s final from tonight’s semifinal. In my previous post I described how the whole voting works. I was hoping for Armenia, Azerbaijan, Switzerland, Israel, Hungary, Malta, Iceland and Romania to advance. Switzerland and Israel didn’t, but the others did, and so did Greece, Finland and Norway and I’m sure I’m forgetting someone. Oh yes, Georgia. The country, not the state.
2. On Tuesday, the first semifinal of the ESC started with a shot of the Øresundsbron, the Öresund Bridge, connecting this year’s host city of Malmö, Sweden, with Copenhagen, Denmark. This is the bridge that was so important in the Swedish/Danish show “The Bridge (Bron/Broen) I so liked, and that is being remade for an American audience, premiering in July. The Brits and French are making their version, too. I think I’ll give both versions a try, but now I’m re-watching the original.
3. Homeschool approval has never come this fast! It took about a week. I’m impressed. Wow. No more homework. No more school germs. No more homework! I think besides keeping me safe from germs, the no homework thing sold the idea to the kids.
4. Mentioning homeschool, I ordered some books, workbooks and stuff. I looked over at what the school recommended–what they use–and realised it was not going to last a whole school year for us. So I’m looking for various resources. I realized Pinterest is useless when you want to educate a child older than 6 in a country other than the USA.
5. My eldest sister and her family are finally here! I have met her only a few times in my life, and it has been great to get to see her twice already, and possibly a few more times before they leave in a week. She is a seasoned homeschooler, and she has given some advice about what to avoid. That was funny, because she pretty much listed my whole educational philosophy. Now that made us laugh.
6. I am so excited about the Doctor Who final tomorrow! I know someone who accidentally got the DVD early, and they told me it was going to be awesome.
7. Shabbat Shalom!
1. Yesterday was the first semifinal of this year’s Eurovision Song Contest. My favourite song of the show was the one from Estonia.
(OK, for those of you who have no idea what I’m talking about: There are 39 countries participating in the ESC this year. There are the “Big 5″: UK, Italy, Spain, Germany and France who go straight to the final. The previous year’s winner as well–this year it’s Sweden (the host country). The rest of the countries are divided into two semifinals. The
countries that participate in the given semifinal, plus half of the countries going straight to the final get to vote after all the songs are presented in the semifinal. There is a televote and a jury in each country, who make up the final scores. The top score each country can give is 12 points. Yesterday 16 countries sang, then on Thursday 17 more contries sing, and then Saturday is the final. After the songs of the final, every country gets to vote, regardless of whether they made it to the final or not, and each country is announcing their results live through satelite broadcast… my favourite hour of ESC! Seeing all the local TV people and hear them say a greeting in their language… It’s really the highlight of the show. Then the winner sings the winning song again, and it’s over for another year… or more like 8 months before all the national selections begin.) From my list of ten I wanted to make the final from the first semifinal, 9 actually made it!
2. Ireland was among those countries that made it to the final. Fortunately it wasn’t Jedward this year! Those weirdos represented my birth country two years on a row. Israel and Hungary are performing on Thursday. I’m getting excited!
3. Tiv Taam. It was a lifesaver yesterday. I was pretty surprised by actually being able to come “home” for the holiday… and we were somewhat hurried, too, because of the stores closing early because of the holiday. It’s Shavuot, you see. Tiv Ta’am was open and we shopped after Mega closed.
4. Castle Season’s Final! Oh my gosh, can’t wait for that cliffhanger to resolve!
5. Shavuot! Shavuot is the holiday 7 weeks after Pesach. We celebrate first fruits and the giving of the Torah. And with every other holiday in Judaism, we have specific foods for Shavuot, too! Chag Sameach!
1. It’s been over 6 weeks since the transplant now, and it seems my eyelashes are coming back. It’s plain awesomeness: I can’t wait to have hair again! I really don’t like to wear real hats, and I like to clip my kipah to my HAIR. Seriously. HAIR. Of course hair comes back at the least comfortable place first, but hey, soon I can start thinking about how to cut my gorgeous (NOT!) hair. I wonder what colour it will be and if it will be curly or straight.
2. Yes, there is a third checkmark on the sidebar. No, I’m not home. I need to keep away from the kids, so I’m staying with a friend, in his new apartment in town. At 69 square meters (743 square feet) it is almost three times as big as his previous apartment (that I kept telling people was 28 square meters, but in reality it was 24, or 258 square feet), and the original apartment having been mostly empty… whatever furniture and decos Nathan has are pretty much lost in the huge space. He already bought a bed and put the fold out couch he had in the living room, and I have a bed in the guest room. He is going furniture shopping
3. Of course I don’t even have the energy to stay on my feet more than a few minutes. I get dizzy and very tired. Sitting down is fine. Lying down is fine. I can do things that way. Standing? No. Walking more than 30 feet? Forget it. Twenty minutes helping with dinner preparations, sitting on the kitchen chair (you see what I mean by no furniture?) wore me out enough that I needed a nap afterwards.
4. But it was worth. No worries, the Brussels sprouts are not on my bed: they are on a clear glass plate on a napkin.
We had to modify the recipe slightly: before pan roasting the Brussels sprouts, I quickly cooked them, adding some salt in the water, just enough that they were cooked, but not mushy. I cut them into half after cooking, and didn’t add salt when Kevin roasted them. They were yummy!
5. Watching Hell’s Kitchen is great. Because of it, I realized that a cualiflower mash must be very nice. We are having that for lunch today. Yes, I’m really focusing on food after being hungry for most of the last 7 weeks. Hospital food was awful most of the time, and not much when it wasn’t awful. I might actually make some peanutbutter cups if I have enough strength for that today. Because food, right now, is super important to me!
6. The érettségi, the Hungarian matriculation exams are underway. Hard to believe that most of the little 2nd graders from my first year of teaching English there are sitting the exams this week! Time flies…
7. Before the usual Shabbat greetings, I just want to thank everyone the support I’ve been getting these past weeks. They have been hard, but maybe it will start to get better now! Shabbat shalom!
1. Jerusalem! Today is Jerusalem day, celebrating the capital city of Israel. Yes, it’sd Jerusalem, not Tel Aviv as the State Department and BBC would like you to belive. Jerusalem is also one of my favourite cities in Israel. One of my brothers live there, and we are pretty frequent visitors at his home. We love to go to the Kotel, or West Wall, the last remaining piece of the Temple. We love to walk the streets, and yes, I even brave the haredi neighbourhoods.
2. Matisyahu’s Jerusalem.
3. Shim Craimer’s Im Eshkachech. Both of these songs are based on Psalm 137:5-6, with the Hebrew being a direct quote.
With the unique culture of the city comes unique cuisine. Arabs, both Muslims and Christians, Jews and non-Arab Christians have lived side by side for a long, long time, ate each other’s food slightly changed, to fit dietary restrictions. 120 lovely recipes–3 of them available free on the above link in PDF format! So go check them out!
My sister has this book, and I love to borrow it. Maybe I should do it again, and soon!
5. The Shuk. And by the shuk, a word meaning market in Hebrew, I mean the Mahane Yehuda market in Jerusalem. A place where you can find anything from meat to halva to clothes to light bulbs. (At Eli’s Shop. He is on Facebook, too.) There is even a synagogue in the market! There is really everything! Oh how I love spending my Friday mornings there, in the sea of people…
P turned 12 yesterday. I can’t believe in a year I’ll be planning his bar mitzvah!
As a gift, he went to a 3-day overnight Star Wars camp organized by the school. Which, of course, included Star Wars day (May the 4th be with you!) and he just got home, full of excitement and good memories. So today there is cake and Lego.
Next year, I’ll be there.
1. It’s May and May brings 94% humidity, and with that come headaches. Remind me, why did I think moving to Israel was a good idea? At least the teamperatures are bearable. Budapest, actually, has higher temps than we do now. Yes, I’m this boring.
2. This one just doesn’t get old.
And Harel Skaat singing (in English) at another wedding.
Yes, I’m all excited about weddings now. Once again, I feel like it’s something that is eventually going to be available for Kevin and me. With France and New Zealand legalizing same sex marriages, I’m hopeful.
3. I have a new niece. She is 19 months old, has Down’s Syndrome and was adopted by my brother Seán and his wife Mary Anne in Ukraine. This is their second adoption, and first SN one. It was a complete surprise to most of our family! They kept it secret in case it fell through, as they traveled on a blind referral. There were only two children matching their criteria, and both had been listed on a big photolisting site, but they still got the referral.
Seán has told me that they got the idea to adopt SN after reading Hope Anne’s blog about Katya’s adoption. They also got the general idea to avoid the colourful fundraising organization, so they could have the freedom of choosing their own facilitators, accomodations, drivers and the such. Taking their five children along and staying 9 weeks in country they still came out having spent less than an average adoption cost involving any of the big organizations, if we don’t count the plane tickets for the children, and only slightly more than two parents traveling etc. if we do.
4. Kevin brought me some yarn the other day, and it wasn’t the type I needed. It had the same colour code, but it was a different sub brand than what I asked for. It was nice yarn, and we agreed if he can’t exchange it I’ll keep it.
He went back to this seller in the shuk, and explained that he got the wrong type, and would it be possible to exchange it. The guy at the booth just packed up a bunch of yarn for him to bring to me to pick out the ones I need. That was so nice of him! In the end he didn’t accept money for some of the yarn I chose, because those were last balls of no longer manufactured yarn anyway. Just my luck: the best yarn falls into this category.
5. Holland has a new king! I totally adore the dutch royal family, and the whole Dutch monarchy, and the people’s attitude towards their monarchs, and the royal family’s attitude towards everything. They are so not like the British royal family. Maybe because they are given more privacy by the press? Who know. Anyway, congratulations to the Dutch on the new King.
6. Getting close to putting a third checkmark on the sidebar. Today I’m having a chest x-ray, and that should greatly weigh in the decision of when I can get out of here. I won’t be able to go home yet, just to a nearby rental apartment, but it will be awesome after more than 6 weeks locked up.
7. Shabbat Shalom!
Click images to view their sources
1. “Vintage” sign making! I found this tutorial via Andi’s blog, and it is pretty close to what we use on a much smaller scale to create door signs and what not at home. Go check out her other posts, too!
2. Last Sunday was Lag B’Omer, which is kind of like Valentine’s Day for Jews when it comes to weddings. I mentioned elsewhere that between Pesach and Shavuot there are 7 weeks we spend in a half moruning, and during this period weddings are customarily not held, at least in the Ashkenazi tradition. On Lag B’Omer we celebrate that the deepest secrets of the kabbalah were revealed, and celebrate we do! There are bonfires (and, alas, due to the weather, wildfires because of the bonfires), haircuts and weddings. The less religious have weddings throughout the week, like this lovely couple, who had Harel Skaat sing at their wedding! This is exactly what I’d like to have at my wedding!
3. Pan roasted Brussels sprouts. (Actually my 11th grade English teacher insisted that I should write the mini cabbage name with a lower case “b”, but I simply can’t. It’s the name of a city! I write Philly cheese steak with a capital “P” as well! And now this has brought to mind all kinds of fun relating to using voice recognition vs. voice recording on an iPhone…) A while ago Jill told me about the oven roasted Brussels sprouts she made. Yesterday Jspace posted a pan roasted Brussels sprouts recipe.
4. This fabric.
I could totally see bedding made out of it for Ezra! He is into the dragons, dinos, sea monsters phase of his life right now. And maybe even the middles would love it: they are playing Vikings a lot.
5. Antibiotics. I know it wasn’t very long, and I broke it with some music, but I haven’t really been blogging for a week. I’ve been fighting pneumonia, and well, without antibiotics I would not be alive at this point. BTW, there is a new checkmark on the sidebar.
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