Monthly Archives: September 2001

yom kippur

i am writing by the edge of the sea. We spent the night here on the beach in a tent. a lot of others had the same idea. The beach was lit with fires and decorated with people in tents with porches made of fabric. hippies with guitars and bonfires… there was a great half moon shining above us and the sound of ancient waves at our feet. We drank whiskey (and a lot of it) yet remained sober. We talked a lot, lit candles in lanterns around the tent and went to sleep. a bit later we awoke panicked. There was sand or rock from the looming cliff above us raining down on our tent. We both absolutely panicked. We rolled the entire tent over in an attempt to get away from what we thought was an avalanche (which is common here.) We couldn’t find the zipper to open the door and so…we panicked. Very soon after we started to laugh… and laugh we did! we’d broken the tent!

the next morning, the rest of the Yom Kippur hippy beach village was all intact with tapestries tied to wood as protection from the sun and there was our dilapidated tent all leaning to the side. he’d traveled all over the world with this tent and one night with me and we break it!

“you want to do something fun today?” tsafi asked before i left for work and i nod enthusiastically. We start to put together a plan to camp out on the beach overnight. It’s yom kippur tomorrow and you can’t drive at all! for 24 hours, we’re supposed to be repenting for this year’s sins. tsafi said “we’ll see the religious freaks at the edge of the shore putting their hands in their pockets and ‘throwing their sins into the sea.” And i wonder if that means we swim in their sins when we surf…

on the beach near caesarea. There are roman aqueducts right on the sand and you can walk up them. There is also a thin island close to shore noticeable only because the waves are crashing over it. There are clusters of rocks underwater but the water is clear. anat is singing a manu chao song. tsafi and gil are playing Frisbee. another couple brought a wipika, which is a surf board with a kite…

children, where surf meets sand, in green tubes, rolling churning foaming current, sailboats in cloudless distance, dark…under nearby waves…

the sea is always there…

today tsafi and i went to the sea…almost no one was there; a few fishermen and some old guys wearing speedos with big bellies. i collected rocks in perfect heart shapes. i picked up feathers floating and tsafi would pretend to save all my sea treasures but dropped them back where they came from, quite obvious and slightly heartbreaking. We walked in shallow pools of crystal clear water around wave breakers. There were rocks covered in snail shells and sea creatures. There were small fish, detectable only by their sun shadows. At one point, we stopped knee-deep at the shore’s edge and the bubbles there made white star prisms on the rippled sand floor. It was amazing… we walked far. witnessing a sand fight between two boys (also in speedos). we sat and watched a bulldozer clear a path out of rocks that had fallen recently from the cliff. The cliff overhead is constantly changing; falling and changing. At one point it looked like a castle wall. Walking back we saw a little man-made hut on the edge of a cliff, made with dried palm leaves and it had couches in it. around it were hah-vah-tzellet ha sharon, this white flower that is in season now and tsafi was very excited about it.

everything is changed now…. the sky feels different. No one is safe anywhere. yesterday’s date was 911, as Diana pointed out. We watched CNN for 8 hours straight, had a night of restless sleep and woke up to watch more. They showed a video of the plane go head on into the second tower and disintegrate! it was shot from battery park city and you can hear people screaming. There were windows raining from the sky, people filming all these things, the red cross pleading for blood donors, everyone panicking…

is it just coincidence that I left NYC five months before the worst act of terrorism ever?

i lit a memorial candle next to some photos i had taken of the twin towers. It burned all night and is still burning… this is just horrible…horrible. i board the morning bus to work and don’t know how safe it is that i do that. i wonder if i am more or less safe in NYC or here. Everyone looks so sad on the bus. We know all too well what senseless things like this can do to a nation.

the twin towers…. they…fell…
6pm Israeli time – as of right now they don’t know who did it. I’m sitting on a table sick, hugging a pillow watching my city in ruins on the television. i am watching people running out of the white house, jumping head first 100 stories to their deaths…. America under attack’ it says on the screen now. They just said that every single flight in the USA is cancelled. The ones in the air are being diverted to Canada When the first tower fell i was screaming, banging the table. When the second tower fell, the announcer said ‘there are no words’. i thought of all the times the twin towers were part of my life. It just was always there! I’ve walked past it, rode the subways underneath, photographed the views. How whenever i was flying home from whenever i traveled, how the sight of the twin towers always made me misty. “could you imagine what it must feel like to be the president of the united states right now?” i ask tsafi… he says he’d rather be a street cleaner.

back from israel from a 2 week trip back home to nyc

have the clouds always been pink and purple in the mornings here and am i just now noticing it? i do see a crow picking at roadkill and the brick sidewalk that took three weeks to get put down but i am rediscovering all the beautiful things about Israel now that I’ve been away. walking in the park with tsafi last night, the nighttime air felt unreal and the sea, diving into it felt safe and warm. i feel again for the first time how soft the sand is, now having a reminder how it feels on the shores of new jersey…hard brittle sand, cold murky churning ocean.