Tel Aviv Diary -September 23-7,2015 - Karen Alkalay-Gut

September 23, 2015

Some people really hate this day.

September 24, 2015

I was really hoping today that at the hospital everyone would be still tired and weak from Yom Kippur and no one would show up. But the whole world was there, speaking Russian and Arabic and Yiddish and Ladino and even Hebrew. And noone knew where to go. The instructions on the operation follow-up were vague, and we went to three rooms and waited in three lines before the doctor.

And all he said was that i need to stengthen my hip muscles. i thought i wasn't supposed to move that way, because the physiotherapist i see twice a week said so. And I was so proud of myself that i was walking around, i expected surprised praise.

And while I was nurturing my broken pride, i met the lady who was operated on 2 days later than me. She's the one about whom I wrote the poem, and I told her.


My roommate said I tried to escape
On my last night in the hospital.

I think I remember wandering the halls
Maybe also being led back to bed,

I know
That in the morning when I woke
The rails of my bed were locked.

But it could also be
My roommate
Hit her morphine button
Once too often

And my wonderful nocturnal freedom
Was just a figment of her imagination.

but she wasn't interested in the poem. She just wanted to tell me how wonderfully she's recovered. Her physiotherapist comes 4 times a week and exercises with her. She's walking better than me.

I forgot to ask her name but I'll probably see her next check up. And by then I'll be dancing!

September 25, 2015

Moti Kirschenbaum died of heart failure last night. Who did not watch his daily tv news show with Yaron London? Who missed his nature documentaries? He was a major figure from the beginning of television here, and we will miss him terribly.

(I really wanted to get to know him a few years ago when I was interviewed for Thin Lips, but he had decided I was a waste of time and not only didn't ask questions, but turned his back while London spoke to us. And then the program didn't show because Arafat died. Or because Kirshenbaum didn't think we were relevant to anything.)

September 26, 2015

Whoops, a rocket fell up north again tonight, by mistake. we are living next door to a war and should be betting on the side of Assad and Putin if we know what's good for us. Because they are going to win.

Actually Iran is going to win too, with the help of Russia. What a mess.

For a moment tonight I thought there was a rainstorm outside, but then I realized it was the garbage collection - at 10:15 p.m. The holidays are so close that we have to get in the essentials whenever we can. Shopping. Tomorrow morning. After that nothing until what, Wednesday. And remember even the grocer needs time to stock. It takes a lot of complicated thinking to be able to run a household in these days..

September 27, 2015

I'm already sick of these holidays. On top of my house arrest with my hip, I'm going stir-crazy. I think i want to go away for a few days. And there are so many places to explore in this country I haven't discovered yet. Hmmm.

The problem is this year's holidays fall in the middle of the week, and you get a weekend, then a weekday, then a holiday, then a few half-holidays, then a weekend, then a holiday. And I think we take the half-holidays too seriously.

Septembeer 28, 2015

We went to the beach in the early hours of the morning to see the reddening moon. No camera but an iphone but the scene was truly amazing. Teen-agers playing volleyball or sitting in circles in the grass and talking, older couples in the chairs of the vacant sandy restaurant, people walking their dogs. it was still dark but amazingly populated - only some of the people had come to see the eclipse. Most of them seemed to know their way around in the area illuminated sporadically by street lights. I was very moved.

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