Tel Aviv Diary June 6-10, 2008 - Karen Alkalay-Gut

Tel Aviv Diary June 6-10, 2008 - Karen Alkalay-Gut

June 6, 2008

Robert Whitehill is always surprising me with amazing websites. But today he topped them all. Robert Kennedy's reports from Palestine in 1948 simply brought me back to a more clear time, and to the place when everything got messed up. I usually like to blame the British for everything that went wrong around here, and wasn't surprised to read of their behavior by a man I admired so much.

What is this crazy story about Tzipi Livni in the Sunday Times? . I think I like it.

(especially the long reaches in the conjectures.)

June 7, 2008

Why I decided to go to the 7 Star mall I'll never know. I expected the mall on Shabbat to be full of people but it wasn't that crowded. It was, however, a bit too bright, too busy, for me. And there was nothing there. Even the Druze food counter looked old and tired.

Since Shvuot is coming around again and the book of Ruth that is read brings up old subjects for me. I've reproduced this poem before but I find it so petulant I can't resist it:


Have you ever noticed I
am the only woman in the story
with no recognition? The Moabite
floozy on the threshing room floor
made her ex-
famous, and provided for
for the rest of her life.

And me
The great
grand mother
of David

gets no visits
on Friday night

June 8, 2008

This has been one of those days - When I finally sat down to write, the film, "The Bubble" came on tv and I couldn't help but watch it. Even though it tries to include too much, and it ultimately isn't realistic, it was as close to Tel Aviv life I've seen in a long time, and I'm sorry I missed it when it first came out two years ago.

And what about Shvuot, you ask? How did we celebrate it? Aside from a family dinner, a cheesecake, the usual hysterical push to get some work done before the holiday, not well.

June 9, 2008

This morning we were supposed to meet Ezi's friends from high school, who have been organizing little uplifting coffeeklatches for him, but he woke up with high fever and feeling rotten so we went to the hospital instead. Amazing how well we know the place. For example, in my vast experience, the emergency room at Ichilov is never busy until around 10:30 in the morning. After that it's organized chaos. Anyway we were in and out within 2 hours, after chest xrays, cardiograms, blood tests, a physical, and the usual kind words from the staff

and one of the most culturally diversive staffs I've ever seen. No two were the same color. and among them i heard them speaking to patients in at least six languages. And this was only in the Internal Medicine Emergency, which has, what 20 beds at most.

A long talk with Lisa a few hours ago about Israeli films got me thinking again about "The Bubble." Maybe to me it was a bit overdesigned, but the sentiment, the patent hunger to be able to take the philistinian passion of Tel Aviv and turn it into a means of making peace, is a fantastic one. And there IS something to the idea of homosexuality as political metaphor that has potential. Just as in the film "Lemon Tree" the passion of a Palestinian woman for her lemon grove mingles some of the concepts of love and land in a manner that is very concrete here.

June 10, 2008

better late than never. In April we ordered new beds from the passover specials ezi's company was offering. we decided on the kind that can be seperated in case he's quarentined, and have all the mechanisms to raise feet and/or head. Anyway they finally arrived, last week, after a lot of hide and seek, and my mattress was filthy, even before it was unwrapped. We took pictures but had nothing to sleep on, so accepted it on the condition they change it right away. Last week. In the mean time I have been finding this new bed hell. I wake up every morning to a dream I am being tortured and go to sleep fearful of the pain which will develop in the night. So if you're looking for a mattress you might want to avoid aminach. I am now awake to write this because i woke up in the middle of the night with the idea that maybe an exercise mat on top of the mattress would alleviate the pain. It does seem to dull things a bit. Good night.

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