Life in Israel is more than what you read in the news. This time of year, Jews all over Israel are getting ready to celebrate Purim! Bags of pre-packaged mishloach manot filled with oznei Haman (hamentashen), candy, games, drinks, masks and more have been on sale in the supermarkets for weeks. Costumes of all sizes and funny hats are sold in small stores on almost every block. Children, teens and even adults appear on the streets in costumes, hats or bits of make-up. Jerusalem billboards announce a myriad of upcoming parties all over the city. Even during the Jerusalem Marathon this past Friday, there was a festive atmosphere as the city’s residents came out en masse to cheer 25,000 friends and relatives.