Tel Aviv Diary - November 19-23, 2012 - Karen Alkalay-Gut

Tel Aviv Diary - November 19, 2012 - Karen Alkalay-Gut

Omer went back to nursery school today, but because there is no shelter there, and they won't be able to run somewhere to protect themselves at naptime, it will only be for a few hours. There hasn't been a rocket in Tel Aviv today yet, and so we tend to relax, but until there is a clear cease fire it is important to be ready at any given moment. Our success in protecting ourselves, being always ready to run to specific safe places, has been a great element in this war.

Two new audio books - one in Italian and one in English - of Belly Dancing in Tel Aviv - are available on itunes and Amazon. Here's the Italian and Here's the English

November 20, 2012

Here's a military operational question for you: What do you do if -at the very moment the sirens begin -your newly trained toddler screams: "KAKI!" My friend in Beersheva didn't waste a moment - picked the naked kid up and ran for cover. She didn't mind too much, but the other people in the hallway with her turned up their noses.

Ever heard a rocket fall near you? - the sound itself is deafening, my friend in Rishon leZion says. She says she can't talk on the phone because she can't hear anything without a deep echo. And she can't hold the phone because she's shaking. And she's one of the people who agrees with me that there's too much to do to be afraid.

November 21, 2012

A demonstration of solidarity with the people at the south at Tel Aviv University today. Thousands milling around, listening to Chemi Rudner .sing, buying stuff at the various booths, enjoying the beautiful day. I am between classes and examining baby socks, and get a text message that there was an explosion in a bus near Ichilov. It took another hour to find everyone I know who could have been on that bus. Unfortunately it wasn't a suicide bomber so we still have to find the culprit.

November 22, 2012

Took a bath last night. What a celebratory event it was! I never take baths, but when the rockets started and I had to be vigilant that's all I wanted to do. So as soon as the ceasefire looked like it had taken effect, I did. I figured no mined busses would be passing by our bathroom.

The night before we met some friends for dinner in Yaffo in the Kedumim Square - an open square, an open restaurant named Sardinia about which I knew nothing. I called my friends and begged to cancel but they thought I was crazy. But they insisted and friends are more important than wisdom, so we went. The next evening (last night) they call to say they went to the museum yesterday and were 100 meters away from the bomb. They called to apologize that they poo-poohed my fear. Their ears were still ringing.

November 23, 2012

I was playing cards with a 6 year old today, and knowing that if he lost, he'd make such a fuss I'd have to keep playing the whole afternoon until he won, so I gave up. He was ecstatic - called his parents to declare his victory. I was just happy to be out of the game. His parents said I don't have the patience to babysit any more, but I know they'll send him back next week.

November 23, 2012

In bed with high fever and an evil stomach ache. My friend in Metulla says it's from too much stress. She looks out the window at the Hizballah building in her back yard, and she says I'M under too much stress.

Not being able to read or talk, I have been lying around thinking about the recent movie of Dahn Ben Amotz, which is trying to rectify the fact that he has been erased from Israeli culture. There is a tendency to associate him with the amnesiac and unfeeling Palmach generation, those who experienced the terrible past of the holocaust in their family, the loss of innumerable friends in the war of Independence, and the political changes, divisions, and disappointments in the country. But I knew him as an extremely sensitive and helpful person. Had I stuck around him and not left the country for a few years he would have connected me with all his friends. As it was, he introduced me to many people who wanted to make business and friendship connections.

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