a different side of Israel

Tag: London (page 2 of 3)

Return to Neverland

NeverlandPeter Pan, that impish never-aging character first immortalized by British author J.M Barrie in 1911, now will come to life again. A sequel to Barrie’s original book, is now due to be released by another British author, Geraldine McCaughrean, who may wind up as being even more famous than Harry Potter creator, J.K Rowling. The book, scheduled to be released in a lavish event planned in London’s Kensington Palace, is the result of a contest in which over 200 authors competed for the winning manuscript to the story that captured the hearts and imagination of both children and adults for nearly 100 years.

Ms. McCaughrean, a writer of children’s books, became fascinated with the idea of bringing Peter Pan, Wendy and the children, the Lost Boys, and of course, Captain Hook, back to life in a sequel that presents Wendy as a mother herself and the Lost Boys as “old boys”. Not only is the fairy Tinker Bell appearing, but a new fairy character as well.

The book, entitled Peter Pan in Scarlet, takes place 20 years after the original story, when Wendy receives a secret message that things are not right at all in Neverland and that she must go back and help the Lost Boys and other characters there set things right. In this sequel, set around fairies, pirates, and other characters similar to Barrie’s novel, Peter Pan himself, though still the impish never-grow-old character he was before is a selfish, unkind personality who likes to play tricks on people, as Wendy soon finds out. “The topic really got a grip on me”, McCaughrean said when interviewed recently. And no wonder, as Geraldine herself is a very prolific author with 125 books including a child’s verson of Geoffrey Chaucer’s immortal classic: Canterbury Tales.

One important change in Peter Pan in Scarlet is the message that growing up (and old) is not as bad as it was described in the original verson when Peter said he never wanted to grow up.

James Matthew Barrie, who himself had no children, and preferred the company of children rather than adults, adopted some boys whose parents had died from cancer. These boys were most likely the Lost Boys of his novel. Barrie donated all of the royalties from both the novel and its characters to the Great Ormond Street Hospital in London where Barrie died. Part of the proceeds from McCaughrean’s book will go toward providing extensive renovations to this famous London landmark that managed to survive WWII virtually intact.

The book is being published in the U.K. by Oxford Press; and in the U.S.A. by Simon & Schuster. And as for the movie? Well, let’s all enjoy the book first!

(Photograph courtesy of Disney)

Not Jewish?! What are you doing here? (PART 14)

Jill CartwrightPart One, Part Two, Part Three, Part Four, Part Five, Part Six, Part Seven, Part Eight, Part Nine, Part Ten, Part Eleven, Part Twelve, Part Thirteen

“Just say what happened,” Sa’ar tells me every time I have asked for his advice on how to write this part of the story.

“Yes but it all sounds wrong,’ I tell him. “What will people think of me? It comes across so bad.”
“But it wasn’t bad,” he says.
“What that I went home with you on the first night I met you? That sounds bad, there’s no two ways about it.”
“Yes but nothing happened,” he reminds me.
“What you think they’ll believe me? Everyone will think I’m a slapper.”
“But it wasn’t like that,” he says.
“Well I know it wasn’t like that, but how do you get it across that I’m sitting with you in a pick up bar and you’re trying to convince me to come back to your place. And I go!! You come out looking like a sleaze ball and I just look naïve and stupid. And I can’t get around it.”
“So you have to try and explain exactly what made you come with me that night. What was it exactly?”
“I don’t know. Something just happened.”
“So just explain what happened and leave it like that and let them think what they want.”

I pulled myself onto a bar seat next to Grizzly while Tanya was spinning around the bar, running into at least 7 people she had gone to school with, 9 people she had served in the army with and 25 people who knew her through her ex-husband who was some kind of elite commando and seemed to be on first name terms with every soldier who had served in the IDF. Grizzly, however, seemed to be well beyond the stage of lucid conversation and seemed quite happy drooped over his beer with his thoughts and so I turned round to speak to the guy who was sitting next to me.

He was a singer, he told me, a fact I immediately dismissed to mean that he sometimes strummed a guitar and belted out a few favorites around the camp fire after a few beers with mates, and when he asked me what I did, so keen was I to underline the fact that I would not be a willing partner in any form of chat up or pick up that I launched into an attack on all things Israeli and male, insisting they were a bunch of liars and connivers, with only one thing on their mind, in a vicious tirade that surprised even myself.

He, he insisted, was not a typical Israeli male.

All typical Israeli males, I insisted, say that.

He wasn’t put off and to prove his point he threw out a few impressions of the Tel Aviv beach-cruising types who stop and squat by all the foreign girls on the sand, affecting a deep interest in the book they are reading and eager to share their memories of that fortnight seven years ago that they spent with their cousin in Holland, or London, or Sweden or wherever the particular girl happens to hail from.

He made me laugh. And he kept on making me laugh. And what can I say; I’m a real sucker for people who make me laugh.

And then I just became more and more absorbed in everything he was saying, and he had these deep brown eyes and something so gentle in his face, his hands; there was no aggression, no edge, nothing ulterior, he looked honest, he looked good. Goodness seemed to pulsate from him; kindness, warmth, a shyness, an integrity. It was magnetic.

But I didn’t plan to go home with him. Even as our talking continued, ignoring the commotion of the night around us, brushing Tanya away when she swung by to yell in his ear “not to bother” with me as I was leaving the country, and barely even noticing when she and Grizzly went home and the bar was starting to empty around us and even the bar staff thought it was a sure thing.

I didn’t plan to go home with him even when we went down to the taxi and he gave the driver our separate addresses, and still didn’t when the barman came running down the stairs of the bar waving the bill in his hand that I had forgotten to pay. But as I was taking the notes out of my purse and Sa’ar was waiting patiently for me in the cab, I swear to God, I felt a little kick in my stomach and something said to me “Go with him.”

And I went. And make of that what you will.

Urban Poetry – With the Real Nitty-Gritty

What do city people have to say about life? And where do they get their inspiration from? I mean, poets around here don’t go outside to the open fields and admire blooming nature, nor do they chase gazelles up a wild forest. And I don’t think there are many attics in Israel, or feather pens for that matter.

Actually, I wonder what urban life is all about, anyway. Working 9 to 5 (or 7), going out to pubs, listening to avant-garde music, meeting snazzy people, refusing to settle down, livin’ la vida loca … Or maybe – being tired and lonely, trying to make ends meet, losing consciousness as well as the will to live…?

Oh, all those damned clichés.

About city life in Israel I can tell you that it ain’t L.A. or Harlem, so you shouldn’t expect any Bukowski or Langston Hughes, nor is this smoggy London, so no Blake either. But I guess it is indeed a sort of an insane mixture of constant change, infinite possibilities, high aspirations, Great Expectations, self-consciousness, loneliness and depression. Add to it some booze, some drugs, and a lot of sex. Let’s see…

The buildings are grey
And so is my life
Shall I go out and play
Or finally find myself
A wife?

Well, you can’t say I didn’t try (don’t bother with the meter! This is a modern piece of poetry, after all).

…Want to know what real Israeli poets think of urban life? Do yourself a favour and read David Avidan.

And if you’re around and feel comfy enough with your Hebrew, visit the “Library” branch of the bookstore chain Tzomet Sefarim (“the Book Junction”), where contemporary poets will be reading their poems inspired by and dedicated to the city.
Wednesday, 27th Sep., 19:30. Dizengoff Center Mall

European Terror Alerts

The British are feeling the pinch in relation to recent bombings and have raised their security level from “Miffed” to “Peeved.” Soon though, security levels may be raised yet again to “Irritated” or even “A Bit Cross.” Londoners have not been “A Bit Cross” since the blitz in 1940 when tea supplies all but ran out. Terrorists have been re-categorized from “Tiresome” to a “Bloody Nuisance.” The last time the British issued a “Bloody Nuisance” warning level was during the great fire of 1666.

Also, the French government announced yesterday that it has raised its terror alert level from “Run” to “Hide”. The only two higher levels in France are “Surrender” and “Collaborate.” The rise was precipitated by a recent fire that destroyed France’s white flag factory, effectively paralysing the country’s military capability.

9-11: The Tragedy and the Warning

9-11: The Tragedy and the WarningToday at 9 a.m. E.D.T., and 4 p.m. M.E.T. (for those living in Israel and other similar time-zone countries), ceremonies will mark the fifth anniversary of what is now being considered the worst single attack against the United States, since Pearl Harbor. The events of this modern ‘day of infamy’ have been shown during the past few days by news networks all over the world. All the major U.S. new programs have been screening the horrible occurrences, in which at least 3.000 people lost their lives; most of them at the sight of the World Trade Center in lower Manhattan, New York City. Particularly as these events are re-screened, the nightmare of that fateful day becomes real again, almost a real as it was too many, a mere five years ago.

Despite intense efforts to find him, however, the world’s No. 1 arch villain, Osama bin Laden is still at large, and in fact appeared over the weekend in a new tape, together with his second in command, Ayman Muhammad al-Zawahiri, with renewed warnings that America and other Western countries have not seen the last of the terror organization known as Al Qaeda.

This follows on the heels of the tape last week in which Al-Zawahiri, together with a person known as Azaam the American, inviting all ‘non believers’ to convert to Islam before it will be too late. With people like bin Ladin and al-Zawahiri still on the lam, and with the near occurrence of yet another mega-terror attack in London only weeks back, many are wondering what is yet in store for not only Americans, but others as well.

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Q&A With A Beirut Resident – Part 3

In this second letter, VJ, a Lebanese Beirut resident, continues with his discussion with our correspondent, of what has caused, and continues to cause, the ongoing conflict between his country and the State of Israel. As in Part I, his comments are posted in his own words.

Hi ………;
Thank you for your reply. True, there are many grey shades over the Middle East conflict ever since it first began, especially that there are many historical narratives to it. To some, Israel is an illegal state that was founded on the basis of deportation and wars. To others, Israel is a fully legal state that was properly and lawfully established, just like the rest of the countries in the world.
As for me, I am totally with an independent, sovereign and LEGAL Israeli state for all its people to live in peace. I am aware of the historical overview that you mentioned, and let me add by saying that the Arab governments and leaders at that time were not that smart or wise in dealing with the Palestinian problem.
However, the Arab mistakes do not justify the Israeli brutality. And the Arab mistakes, do not rule out the fact that Israel did and still does violate International law just like I explained before.
My main point from my previous e-mail is that Israel, by violating international law and acting too aggressively over all its neighbors over the many decades, has generated the hate, the fanaticism and the terror which Israel itself is fighting against today. And I gave you the example of how Hezbollah was born. I’ll say it again in those few lines:

In 1978 the Ambassador of Israel in London is shot and wounded. 6 hours later, 28,000 Israeli-soldiers invaded the Lebanon. They occupied 20% of Lebanon for the next 22 years.
In 1982 Israel re-invaded the Lebanon and occupied another 43% of it. That is when and why, Hezbollah was born………
Israel’s “claim” that this war was against the PLO was false: Everything in Beirut was destroyed, from civilians to infrastructure to hospitals. Nothing was spared. And for what? For an Israeli “ambassador” in “London” that was “wounded”. So, for that ambassador, Israel killed thousands in Lebanon. It violated international law, the PLO got more support, and other groups started popping up, like Hezbollah.
Do you think it was a smart move from Israel?
So again, every time you hate Hasan Nasrallah, remember that it was your government’s present and previous wrong and unjust strategies that made Hasan Nasrallah powerful, making him by far the most popular man in Lebanon and the Arab world today.
I know the justifications about Israel’s occupation of Lebanon and other violations. But the fact remains: it is a violation of international law, and it remained not 1 or 2 years (like 1559), but 22 consecutive years. And what made things worse, is that it was an occupation of a residential land, where people live. Schools, hospitals, mosques, churches and homes were around the place. I am sure those people would praise and worship Hezbollah when they know that Hezbollah is fighting an occupation which has been in their land for so, so long.
As for the suicide bombers; first of all I do not support them. I am against all sorts of violence that targets civilians.
But many, many Palestinians were put in situations like this:
House destroyed.
Parents killed.
No job.
No school.
No future.
People around are still being targeted

How do you expect them to react?
They lost everything, and have no hope in a future. They have a “living body”. That’s it. That’s all what they have. And all of that are because of Israeli policies.
How do you expect such humans to react?
Again, I do not support suicide bombings…but once again, try to analise “why” are they happening and continuing to happening and even being taught in schools. Be careful. I’m not “justifying”. I’m simply trying to “explain” why. I might be totally, totally wrong.
To me, those are the root causes, behind Hezbollah, Nasrallah and a lot of the terrorism in this region.
I hope you would agree with me somewhere. Unless you believe violating international law is justifiable, and that it has no consequences.

Following Chrchill’s “Victory at all Costs!”

Winston ChurchillAs Israel’s new war with the Hezbollah intensifies, including today’s missile attacks on Haifa’s energy and transportation infrastructure (8 killed so far, and damage inflicted to oil refineries and storage facilities, as well as to the railroad yards) people are becoming more and more bewildered as to how far this conflict will go. Even Tel Aviv, Israel’s largest city and commercial hub is not immune as reports suggest something may have happened there too. We are only entering the fifth day of this war, and already more than a third of the country is under virtual siege, including Israel’s third largest city. With this reality in mind, it reminds me of another similar situation in the spring of 1940, when Great Britain was in the early stages of it’s war with Nazi Germany, and England’s new Prime Minister, Winston Churchill, delivered his historically famous speech before his first session of the House of Commons. While I won’t quote the entire message, some very inspiring excerpts are worth noting here:

” This House welcomes the formation of a government representing the united and inflexible resolve of the nation to prosecute the war to a victorious conclusion.

” I say to the House that as I said to ministers who have joined this government, I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears, and sweat. We have before us an ordeal of the most grievous kind. We have before us many, many months of struggle and suffering.

” You ask, what is our policy? I say it is to wage war by land, sea, and air. War with our might and with all the strength God has given us, and to wage war against a monstrous tyranny never surpassed in the dark and lamentable catalogue of human crime. That is our policy.

” You ask, what is our aim? I can answer in one word. It is victory. Victory at all costs – Victory in spite of all terrors – Victory, however long and hard the road may be, for without victory, there is no survival.

” Let that be realized. No survival for the British Empire, no survival for all that it has stood for, no survival for the urge, the impulse of the ages, that mankind shall move forward toward his goal.

” I feel sure that our cause will not be suffered to fail among men. I feel entitled at this juncture, at this time, to claim the aid of all and to say: Come then, let us go forward together with our united strength.” Winston Churchill, May 13, 1940

So went the immortal words of perhaps one of this planet’s greatest leaders and statesmen for all time. Despite almost impossible odds, including its inspiring air victory over the German Luftwaffe in the Battle of Britain, and it’s capital, London under the blitz for four terrible years, this little island nation did realize that final victory exactly 4 years to the day after Churchill made his soul-stirring speech.

The State of Israel now finds itself in a struggle not unlike that which Gt. Britain faced more than 65 years ago. This struggle has been ongoing since Israel achieved her independence in May, 1948. And the present enemy she faces is one of vilest and most inhumane entities that has risen from the depths of Hades – and no less ferocious than the same one which nearly destroyed the Jewish People and would have destroyed England as well, had not men like Churchill stood up to it’s tyranny. Israel’s leaders, also representing a newly formed government, must now rise up to inspire and lead the people it represents to give their version of “blood, toil, sweat, and tears” until final victory is achieved.

As Winston Churchill so eloquently said: “for without victory, there is no survival”.

The Only Jew in AlJazeera Net

British Jewish journalist Arthur Neslen Being a Jew in England, says British Jewish journalist Arthur Neslen, is to have your entire identity, culture and history judged in reference to Israel.
Because Diaspora identity is at death’s door, clinging desperately to this country – the one remaining floating plank from a sinking ship. But to criticize Israel or even talk about it in a reasonable manner among the Diaspora, he says, has become totally impossible; the terms of the debate, he says are just too emotive and too visceral.
And so, in order to provide his critique on Israel, he let Israelis speak for themselves.
Neslen, who is the former London correspondent for, came to Israel in 2002 and interviewed some 50 Israelis, from all political affiliations and from all walks of life, and put them all together in a book – or as he likes to think of it “a mirror” – a mirror of just what that Israel is, according to which he and everyone else in the Diaspora is being judged.
He is now in Israel promoting that book, entitled “Occupied Minds: A Journey through the Israeli Psyche” and I had the chance to interview him last week about the work, the people he met while writing it, why he thinks of political Zionism as the enemy and just why he describes Israel is a “modern-day Golem,” which will destroy the very people it was created to protect.
I was also intrigued to know just what it was like for him to be the only Jew at

Find out this and more in the full interview …

Not Jewish?! What are you doing here? (Part 11)

Jill Cartwright

Part One, Part Two, Part Three, Part Four, Part Five, Part Six, Part Seven, Part Eight, Part Nine, Part Ten

Shalom to all that (3) by Jill Cartwright

Jill continues her good-byes, soaks up the Shabbat atmosphere, and looks for the power to pack …

Isn’t it amazing just how much stuff you can accumulate. I had come to Israel with one solitary backpack, stuffed unceremoniously with a few items of clothing that had done me for my year’s traveling round South America. And even though my one pair of sandals had sufficed for the “laid-back sand bowl” look of Be’er Sheva, I hadn’t quite realised before my arrival just how serious Tel Aviv women can be about getting dressed up for the night.

I’d thought Tel Aviv would be full of Israelis of the kind you meet in Koh Phi Phi or La Paz – all in floppy patterned trousers and Teva sandals, and was quite taken aback to meet a whole new breed of made up, sprayed up, nailed up tottering beauties squeezed into designer jeans and sparkling tops – not to be outdone of course by one of the largest and proudest gay communities in the world.

And so as always happens when you live out of your own country for any extended period of time, not only do you start picking up a few of the language habits (walla and yoffie had long ago become standard garnishing to my English sentences) but I had also submitted to a few Tel Aviv fashion trends, and had now amassed a wardrobe of spangly vests, figure-hugging trousers and a small but not insignificant collection of that original Israeli invention – the platform flip-flop.

I remember once when I was in England for a short break and was wandering around London shops wasting time before heading to Heathrow for my flight and one of the saleswomen had asked me where I was from after asking her, in perfect English (or so I thought) how much something was. “I’m English,” I’d told her, thinking maybe the fact that I had a slight tan had thrown her. “Oh,” she’d said, surprised. “You don’t look English at all. Something in the way you’re dressed.”
I’m not sure if it was a compliment or not.

And books. How had I managed to accumulate so many books? I hate throwing away books, so I knew I would have to lug them all the way back home with me. It’s the curse of the wandering bibliophile: nowhere can even start to be called home until there is a bookshelf stocked with the familiar faces and a steadily growing population of new ones.

I stared vacantly at the physical objects that were the result of my two years in Israel and tried to think of how I was going to summon up the energy to pack them.

I padded barefoot through to the lounge to call my best friend in London to tell her I was coming home. Her excitement was muffled through her scarf and was swallowed up in the churning of the trains as she stood on the platform at Clapham Junction, jokingly telling me I was crazy because it was “bloody freezing” there. It was late October. It was also Saturday. “I have to go into the office to do some work, nightmare,” she started telling me. “I’ve been there all week from 8 til 8, you wouldn’t believe …” and then the line went quiet as she had obviously boarded the train and rattled off into a tunnel. Oh yes, I remember working in London. And I remember now why I’d vowed never to do it again.

Academic Dilemma: Are Advanced Degrees Within your Reach ?

Most university graduates possessing a B.A. or B.S. degree eventually must decide if it is worthwhile to go on to receive a higher academic degree. In today’s highly competitive world, the answer to this question in most cases is that without a higher degree, finding a better career opportunity is much more difficult.

Sure, we all have heard some recent success stories of people such as Bill Gates of Microsoft, or Sir Richard Branson of the Virgin Group of companies, both of whom have managed to amass huge fortunes without receiving even an undergraduate degree. These two are outstanding exceptions, though, and the ‘bottom line’ for success is to continue on up the academic ladder and receive at least an MA or MBA. Degree. MBA degrees have recently received more and more attention as a degree worth having, whether one is involved in a business oriented career, or in any number of fields including even science and health related professions. Anyone planning to start a new business venture, otherwise known as a ‘start-up’ business undertaking, as well as those involved with administration or customer relations, will benefit highly from the practical and theoretical knowledge received from completing an MBA Degree.
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Meat and Wine Company – Kosher Dining With Class

Dining out in Israel has always been a challenge for observant people who want quality dining as well as top notch service. With the opening of a new quality restaurant, The Meat and Wine Company, in Herzlia Petuah, kosher diners will now have an opportunity to enjoy a truly quality meat restaurant without compromising their religious beliefs.

The new restaurant is part of a chain founded by a South African company that plans to open several of them in Israel, including Eilat. Religious diners in that city will soon be able enjoy a fine meal without having to remain in their hotels, once that city’s branch is opened. The company, which opened a restaurant in Dubai, in the U.A.E. received very favorable response there, resulting in their planning to open other branches elsewhere in the ‘Gulf’.
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Not Jewish?! What are you doing here? (Part Eight)

Jill Cartwright

Part One, Part Two, Part Three, Part Four, Part Five, Part Six, Part Seven

It’s All About Money

Aaah, money. Nobody seems to earn much of it in Israel – certainly not in 2003, at the height of the unemployment crisis, and least of all our heroine. Her relationship with Boaz over, she starts to wonder if there’s any point in staying on. Perhaps she should go travel, clear her mind? Excellent idea! There’s just one small problem… How will she afford the trip?

by Jill Cartwright

Since the talk on the beach with Boaz, it took only a few weeks for the relationship to completely unravel. There had been talk of him moving full-time up to Tel Aviv as his studies in Be’er Sheva only required him to be there a couple of days each week and of us finding an apartment together, but the whole marriage conversation had really nipped it all in the bud and it seemed pointless to be picking out paint for the living room walls when we knew things weren’t really going anywhere.

And so once again we parted ways and I wondered what I would do with myself. Things felt different this time – more final, like the book had been closed and sealed on this chapter of my life. I was feeling it was time to move on. Noa had moved out to a moshav with her boyfriend, Shahar was newlywed, Grizzly was ensconced with his new girlfriend and I felt I needed to be far away from Boaz, fearing that if I stayed we would constantly sway into each other’s lives, but always a little unsure and always a little reluctant. Maybe it’s time I left Israel, I thought.
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The Joys of Air Travel (part two)

By Debbie Gold Hadar

El Al BoeingIn part one, I discussed a trip down memory lane: specifically, the memory lane that exists between the alighting point outside London Heathrow Airport, Terminal One, (where there are never enough trolleys, and someone always catches the back of your heel with theirs as you walk into the terminal) and good old El Al check-in, AKA Area P (sigh).

Today we progress from Area P (sigh). Onwards, ever onwards.

We walk through the separate El Al “we don’t actually trust the regular British x-ray machines, so we’ve had some flown in from the Weizmann Institute that are so accurate they can count the bristles on your toothbrush” security check, watching enviously as the other passengers simply whiz through the regular but obviously less thorough security check.

Well, as Sharon Stone quoted her agent: “It’s Israel. They invented security!”

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Not Jewish?! What are you doing here? (Part Six)

Not Jewish!? What are you doing here?
In Part Six of “Not Jewish?!”, our heroine reminisces about life in Tel Aviv during the first days of Gulf War II. Carrying around a gas mask in a cardboard box seemed like a weirdly retro, 1940s moment to an Englishwoman who learned about the Blitz in high school history class…. The war also brings Boaz back into her life. Suddenly Jill must grapple with some Serious Questions About Life that she would have preferred not to face.

Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5

What a gas…

by Jill Cartwright

I still carried my gas mask with me – to work at the paper and at the bar where I still had a part-time job, even though I had serious doubts as to its actual effectiveness. I’m sure that if anything actually happened I would have had a heart attack from the panic, been paralysed with fear or too shaky to actually get the thing out of its box.

And that box. It was a cardboard box. It was so 1940s. To me gas masks were a thing from history; people had gas masks slung over their shoulders in black and white pictures of people running round London during the Blitz, or in photos of queues of children in long shorts waiting at train stations to be evacuated from London. Gas masks were Carrie’s War, not Jill’s war.
Gas Masks Normandy The masks themselves looked like useless pieces of World War II rubber that you see in museums, not cutting edge military equipment from the 21st century. How were silly goggles with a plastic snout supposed to save me from this non-conventional, chemical, biological attack everyone was ranting about? It was laughable.

I tried not to even think about the possibility of actually having to use it and tried to approach the situation with a kind of detached humor, which is probably better known as idiotic denial, and lived in the blind and totally unsubstantiated belief that of course nothing would actually happen.

It was like when I get on the bus here, and as always – still to this day – the little warning light comes on in my head that there is the possibility that the guy who just stepped on, who looks pretty much like anyone else sitting on the bus, could suddenly explode. But then I think “nah, it won’t happen, not today.” Why? Because my gut feeling says so.
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Rantings from a broad

By Debbie Gold Hadar

Yes. Rantings. I rant – or write – to you from a small and sheltered corner of London, where the temperature outside is languishing somewhere between 1-6 degrees, and inside it feels like Ibiza because I can’t turn down the central heating. So it’s a question of skipping around the room, scantily clad until it’s time to go outside, whereupon I must don my industrial strength steel wool cami-knickers and girdle set; and, to my clothing ensemble on top of this add hats, coats and various scarves and brave the English winter.

Seriously, shame on me. I lived here for 25 years. You’d think I might have some sort of recognition factor, that my body – if not quite embracing the cold as a long lost friend, might have at least shown an inkling of comprehension. Apparently not. God it’s freezing here.

(Not as I type, of course, which I’m doing semi-nude in order to avoid melting into a puddle.)

On the plane on the way over here, I was fortunate enough to catch the latest chick flick. My colleague – a lovely man who resembles the Little Shop of Horror’s Seymour Krelbourne in attitude if not in looks (seriously, I was looking out of the taxi window exclaiming at how central London has changed for the better, he was squinting at the pavements for signs of perennial flora) and I very much enjoyed “Prime”, starring the magnificent Meryl Streep and Uma Thurman – two of the better actors of the female persuasion. Ever. In my not-so-humble, although much considered personal opinion.

Maybe you’ve heard of this movie? Thurman plays Raffi (I know. I know!) – a newly-divorced 37 year old woman with a healthy attachment to her Jewish, successful therapist (Streep). On the path to post-marital enlightenment and happiness she falls for David, a Jewish 23-year-old wannabe artist (who was total eye candy and made the movie even more compulsive viewing than it already was).

David, of course, being Streep’s son. A Jewish boy and the ultimate shiksa. Every Jewish boy’s wet dream; every Jewish mother’s nightmare:

“No, don’t worry about me, I like it here with my head in the oven, this way the light doesn’t hurt my eyes, and I’ll die quicker than waiting for the heart attack that I’ll get when you walk down the aisle in the Church. Or maybe you should just smack me over the head with your baseball bat, dollink. And do something with your hair.

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