Some posts were in Hebrew, some posts were in English.. but TOGETHER we got through it.

Being under rocket fire is a scary experience. In Tel Aviv we have 90 seconds to grab our family and run to the nearest shelter. Between May 11th and May 16th 2021, we had 19 alerts in our city and had to run to shelters six times. This is not a political post. This is a first-hand account of what it’s like to live under rocket fire, as told by the 340,000 members of the Secret Tel Aviv Facebook Group.

Secret Tel Aviv Facebook Group is a Community of over 340k members – including 75% of Tel Aviv residents between the ages of 20-40. During the rocket fire it became an essential resource to find out what was going on. Engagement in the Group increased 400% during the week of the attacks, and on the evening of May 15th/16th, when Hamas had warned of rockets at midnight – arriving a few minutes late at 12.09am – over 200k members were active in the Group.

So here we go… some posts are funny, some posts are serious, some posts are heartwarming, and some posts are just plain crazy – thank you everyone for sharing! We’ve split this post into the serious stuff (points 1-5) and the funny stuff (5-10). Both were equally important to get through this, Rina summed it up great…

“Just wanted to say thank you,
Thank you for your entertaining posts!
In a state of a mild panic attack, raising the smile you make with the laughs,
This really helps!”

I couldn’t have said it better! See post.

Supporting Each Other

One of the most amazing things about this community is how people support each other. Each time someone posted they were scared, they were answered with reassurance from hundreds of people…

I’m scared. How do you guys cope? by Vi

See post. We loved this answer from Oran Halevi: “Starring secret TLV as one of my top priority groups and helping those who might need assistance to cope- You’re in the right place. Basically a lot of Netflix, a lot of Bamba and a lot of chill. Works every time”‘.

Just looking for a hug by Avital

See post.

Do you also imagine that you hear the alarm over and over again during the day by Rafi

See post.

I’m afraid to go to sleep by Sagi

See post.

Readiness Check by Kobi

Some good tips if your city is ever under rocket attack. See post.

People in Shelters

In the line of fire…

From left to right: Amazing neighbour brings cakes to the shelter by Dikla, don’t disturb Raam’s afternoon nap by Hadar, family sleeping in their shelter floor by Gal, everyone hiding in the stairwell by Yaniv… Yaniv’s post actually says “When you advertise a 3 room apartment in Tel Aviv for 9 thousand shekels”.

The most embarrassing situation that a siren has caught you?

What an amazing post! Check out some of the gems in the comments, here are some of our favourites:

  • “I forgot to put on the wig (cancer) and only found out when all the neighbors got scared of the baldness… (used to seeing me with long blonde hair )” by Nirit ❤
  • “On the street. Me with headphones and suddenly someone jumps next to me and carries me somewhere. I’m in shock, I almost fight a person. It turned out that there was an alarm and he noticed that I had no idea about it and I was with headphones”. By Albina
  • “I was hot at night so I took off my bottom and pants next to the bed together to be ready and I slept naked. From here to there I go up from the shelter and look in the mirror and see that I wore it upside down and the bottom (pink thong on black pants should be mentioned) on the pants!!!!” by Lisya
  • “I had to pull my dad out of the shower because he didn’t hear the alarm, he slipped and the towel fell and I saw where I came from” by Sapir.
  • “Standing in a stairwell, on heavy laxatives, before a colonoscopy. Not easy.” By Nomi.
  • “I’m reading the stories from the stairwells here and I’m a little bummed that I have a shelter” by Eli

Yankaleh’s Flower Shop

They can break our streets but not our spirit 💙

This story captured the hearts of the group. People came in this morning to support Yankaleh’s Flower Shop in Ramat Gan, where the rocket hit. The owner’s grandson posted on FB that they might need to throw all the flowers away due to the situation, but guess what? everything sold! Read more.

People are now queuing to buy flowers at ′′ Yaankel Flowers ′′ because yesterday his store in Ramat Gan was hit by the fragments. Because the store was destroyed they can’t hold goods they bought for holidays for long. And people came to support. There’s nothing exciting than this. Read more.

Lily’s Story

This was one of the most special posts from the week… Thank you Lili for sharing and for your positivity…

“I thought hard about my decision to write this message, as I am a very private person, but after the last few days, I feel the need to speak up.

My house got hit on Tuesday eve in Givatayim, and thankfully for the siren, I can still tell my story. I didn’t die, I am here. When I first saw the mess, I was relieved to be alive, but then came the hatred. For 5 minutes I wasn’t myself. I took a side, I expressed myself differently, I forgot who I am, and it made me sad.

I am an open-minded person who believes in love and peace, who embraces diversity, who is grateful to have lived in different countries, and who loves to learn from other cultures and ethnicities. Furthermore, I am a proud Orthodox Jew, but I love it that I have a family, friends, neighbours, and colleagues with a divers background. My favourite place is Yafo in Israel, where I sit amongst the Arabs, Jews, Internationals, tourists, and we all enjoy the beauty.

My hatred disappeared after 5 min of anger, I became myself again. I smiled, I cracked 1 or 2 jokes, I felt normal again. We kept going back and forth to the basement every time an alarm went off, and I bonded with strangers.

I can’t thank enough the ppl (my family overseas, strangers, friends, work, police, military etc) who offered me a place to stay, kind words, a warm embrace, or a listening ear. A big thank you to those who are helping me now that I am “homeless.” My gratitude is enormous, I can’t thank you all enough.

The damage to my house will be repaired, in the end of the day it is just stuff…who cares, I am myself again, and I can keep enjoying my life. I am an eternal optimist, I believe in sharing, in equality, dialogue, and that we can agree on disagreeing.
I don’t believe in violence and excluding ppl. We all have to take responsibility whether small or big. We have to start somewhere. I am sorry for the lives lost, the emotional damage, and so much more. I hope we will have peace soon!!

But this message isn’t about me, and what happened. So many are suffering, and there is always someone who got it worse. I am writing this because the madness in the streets needs to stop. STOP slaughtering each other, STOP attacking your neighbour, your old friend, your fellow human being. I don’t care what your excuse is for this violence, because there is NO EXCUSE!!

We have a choice how we use our voice, what action we undertake, and how we want to live our lives. Stop hiding behind your masks, hatred, bad education, falls anger, politics. I didn’t decide to kill someone after Tuesday, I didn’t go on the street and damage others or lit fire to properties. No, I cleaned my house as much as it was possible, and I moved on. I sat again amongst my old friends and new friends in Yafo, grateful for being alive.

Please let’s come together. We can make a difference if we want to. This is our choice and our strength.

Stay safe!”

Read post.

Don’t go to the beach

Talk about viral videos, Stas’ video of what happens when a siren goes off and your on the beach got used by news stations all over the world. Scary sh*t.

See post.


The Anticipation

Free garlic bread by Ben Raul Maizel

On May 12th we were warned there would be a rocket barrage at 6pm… we were still waiting at 6.11pm

See post.

Have you chosen what to wear yet? by Tal

Waiting for a rocket attack is a bit like the nerves when you’re waiting for your dream date to turn up on your first date. Is this going to be a life changing moment? Are you going to get out of it alive? And if you are using a public shelter, this could very well be your first date with your dream date.

See post.

Stand on one leg by Eliana

On 15th May Hamas warned Tel Avivians would need to ‘stand on one foot’ from the intensity of the rocket barrage they would fire on the civilian populace… Eliana was ready!

See post.

The Horny-ness

There’s something about rockets that made everyone horny… is that just normal Tel Aviv?!

Which Shelter has the most handsome people? by Michaela

See post.

Witty opening sentences to start with girls by Asaf

Since bunkers are so romantic… here are some sure-fire pick-up lines to break the ice!

Some of the best:

  • If I knew a bomb like you would fall on me, I wouldn’t have entered the protected space! – Michal
  • Are you from Hamas? Because I think you dug a tunnel to my heart! – Ran
  • How did Iron Dome miss a bomb like you? – Shimon
  • I have a European Passport! – Tamar
  • Do you hear the booms?! This is my heart! – Shaike
  • Hey, if Hamas doesn’t take you out, can I? – Tom
  • I’m like Hamas – I can keep you up all night! – Ido
  • Do you want to come to me to see a movie in my mamad? – Gilad
  • Wanna come up to my stairwell? – Gabriel
  • Do you know what is similar between you and Ashkelon? Tachat Aish! – Daniel
  • Do you believe in love from the first barrage? – Yaron
  • What does a bomb girl like you do in an open space like this? – Tal

For more gems, check out the post.

Is “are you ok?” the next “are you awake?” by Aviv

You know they are probably okay, but what easier way to slide into their messages?

See post.

Missed connection by Nevo

Love story of the conflict. Maybe he could have used the previous “pick-up lines” post sooner!

See post.

TV Reporters

TV News Show or Tinder? by Itay

See post.

Where to find these two? It’s urgent.. by Or

Don’t ask why we want to know, just tell us where to find these two ‘unique’ guys..

See post.

Guy showing muscles on tayelet by Dimitri

Looking at the Reporter or the Reps-and-Shoulders guy?

See post.

TV anchor scrolling by Noam

Swiper no swiping!

See post.

Picture of guys ogling by Zohar

See post.

Guys head dancing by Shirel

The Tel Aviv itch!

See post.

More funny shit, because this is how we cope

Moral to order wolt? by Guy

See post.

Just another guy on the beach by Heely

See post.

Rocket vase by Benaya

One country’s treasure is another country’s trash..

See post.

Jewish parents by Ben

See post.

Tasa song by Matan

See post.

Hamas Metro by Yair

See post.

Parking!??!! by Michael

See post.

Don’t forget your Spanish lessons! by Kobi

See post.

The Memes

Israel vs. haters like Jon Snow by Tina

See post.

Hummus Hamas by Yossi

See post.

Me age 15 vs age 36 by Dudi

See post.

When I explain vs. When she explains by Yossi

See post.

You’re always going to have tension by Ariel

See post.

The monster you think I am by Patricio

See post.

Want to get all kinds of awesome recommendations directly to your inbox? Sign up to our weekly Events Newsletters here

Looking for more ideas?