Tel Aviv Diary - December 3-7, 2009- - Karen Alkalay-Gut

Tel Aviv Diary - December 3-7, 2009 Karen Alkalay-Gut

December 3, 2009

I was going to write earlier but have been chatting with some guy from Ramallah - i don't like chatting because it doesn't go into real depth, but it is such a window into my neighbors' world i can't always resist. There is so little we know about our neighbors - all of them. And so much responsibility to learn.

And to teach.

December 5, 2009

Erased yesterday. But it had something to do with Shabbat and how much I love it. And the cool Habadnik in a hoodie who gave me some shabbat candles. It's very discouraging to write about such simple yet exciting moments and have them disappear.

December 6, 2009

The more we understand the other, the better our chances for compromise and survival. One of the more active organizations I know in this field is the Interfaith Encounter Association. To support them, send to:
12/34 Ha'arazim Street
P.O.Box 3814
Jerusalem 91037

2. Tax-deductible contributions in the U.S.A.:
Friends of the Interfaith Encounter Association
c/o Dominic Bellino
3 N 923 Bonnie Drive
St. Charles, IL 60175

I'm a little crazy about the necessity for interfaith encounters, even though i'm not really actively doing anything about it right now.

December 7, 2009

The building I live in is populated primarily by the same people who bought their apartments before the building was up, sometime in 1972. We know each other well, even though we are very different in our lives. And on the 15th of December we turn on the underfloor heating. It is the least expensive form of heating and keeps the chill off our old bones. Sometimes we can put it off for a week or so, but today the neighbors were knocking at our door to get Ezi to fire up the furnace as soon as possible. The dampness is the hard part, the cold walls and the wind coming in from under the window sills. Before I lived here, we used a kerosene heater that had to be lit outside because it smelled so bad. After that we had a gas heat, and one night, I fell asleep next to it while keeping watch over a sick child. It was a stormy night and the electricity failed, which woke me up to discover that the gas line had gotten loose and the gas was flowing freely into the room. That was a 'defining' moment for me, following the sound of the hissing gas and pulling down the lever, groping for the windows in the dark and throwing them open to the rain, etc. We had no phone and I was the only adult in the house. And even though I knew then I'd be able to rely on myself, I also knew that I'd have to find a safer way to heat the house.

To Karen Alkalay-Gut Diary

To Karen Alkalay-Gut home