Tel Aviv Diary December 25-31, 2016 - Karen Alkalay-Gut

Tel -Aviv Diary - December 25-31, 2016 - Karen Alkalay-Gut

December 25, 2016

Merry Christmas!

For Hannukah this year we seem to have set Haifa on fire. The UN resolution was apparently not enough of a miracle for us. For years the UN has been warning us about the settlements - and now they carried through. For years the mayor of Haifa has been warning the government about the dangers of the nearby oil refineries. but who listens?

save the afternoon of the 27th of January for antishefa. i'll be doing a shtick.

December 27, 2016

i was all set for a day of work, a meeting at Beit Leyvick, an afternoon of museum with my grandson and and evening at a concert when the kid came down with a violent virus.Now grandmothers in this country play serious roles. Drop everything and swing into action. Now I'm too tired to work and am beginning to feel the virus in me.

Of course the politics have made me sick as well. But with a virus at least I can keep a bucket by my bed and get rid of what's bothering me.

December 27, 2016

Everywhere I went today people were discussing the idea of democracy and how it has failed. Democracy has always been a problem. When I first read Thoreau in high school and considered the sentence "any man more right than his neighbors constitutes a majority of one," i realized that democracy has to be based on education. But when we can't trust the educators because they are determined by politicians who have other interests than absolute truth, then the whole basis for democracy crumbles. so it's now time for a king.

maybe one who speaks Arabic and Hebrew.

and English

Better a queen.

clearly when the world has lost its center recentering is an absolute necessity.

December 28, 2016

24 hour flu - violent, enervating, terrifying. an hour ago i began to swallow, and now i've managed to get toast down. And I'm ready to swallow whatever John Kerry dishes out in his final speech. In fact, maybe it's curing me.

December 29, 2016

And indeed Kerry was like the pepto-bismal I've been drinking in enormous quantities all day promising to ease the way down. he claims that he's saving us from suicide, and I'm sure he's right, but when he says he had nothing to do with the UN vote, and we know that Joe Biden made a few phone calls to various nations in order to clinch that UN condemnation, I stop trusting him.

Gabriel Moked asked me to translate his introduction to the Jerusalem Review issue on Hebrew poetry and I did - but i had John Kerry moments. The fact that Hebrew is the oldest language in constant use is true, but it bothers me that he adds that Arabic and the other semitic languages stem from it and uses that fact to emphasize the superiority of our language, and in inviting the other languages to join us - emphasizing our superiority - bothers me no end. As with Kerry - not that its not right, but there is an underlying agenda that drives me mad.

December 31, 2016

So this is the end of the year. Next year might be better. Yesterday and today were good, so that's not a bad sign.

we had some good parties. last night we even danced.

Today we braved the labyrinths of Ichilov (parking in the back on Shabbat) to visit a neighbor recovering from a fall. The basement labyrinths are complex and not well marked so it is always a challenge to go there. Someone told us that there is another way into the parking lot on the Sabbath, but it was only after we had reached our patient, who was sunning herself in what turned out to be an amazing day. it was only in the late afternoon, after we were leaving Oren's after lunch, that we began to see the promised rain. Now for new year's eve, it is pouring. fortunately, Ezi's cooking and we don't have to go out. it's our friends who will suffer.

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