After School Clubs

      “Mom, Can I have six Liras please?”  “What do you need it for?”  “I want to join a club; it costs six liras per month.”  “We don’t have that kind of money to spend,” said mom, “But I will talk to Dad and we’ll see what we can do. If it is that important to you.”     This was a nice club to join. Almost everyone in the fifth grade joined. For the first time I actually joined a dance class, Israeli folk dance. Those days, Israeli folk dance was very simple. The repertoire was not big or complicated, so in no time we learned a few dances.  circle dances, line dances and yes, partner dances.  “Alright everyone, partner up!” Yelled the dance teacher over the loud music. He was a tall guy with curly blondish hair, and he was very loud. Everyone found a partner almost at once. Being the shortest boy in my class didn’t help getting a partner. No girl wanted to dance with a shorter boy, and a dark skin one too, no matter how cute or smart he is.  “Will you be my partner?” I heard a shy, s


      “Mom,” I said as she was showing me the new “Zohar” washing machine. “I need a Blanket.”  “See that? She said, “this is how you start the machine. It is half automatic, which means we have to control when to switch the functions. What do you need a blanket for?   “We are building a sukkah.”  “Nice, I will get you one of the old blankets, but now I want you to learn how to use this machine. When we rinse the laundry, we don’t waist the water. We can reuse it for the next wash. So, I have here a few buckets for the water to drain and collect. you have to remember to put the hose in the bucket before you turn the switch to rinse. You see, this machine has its own cycle of rinsing. We don’t have to put the clothes through that squeezer. You don’t need to be afraid that your fingers will get stuck in between the two hard cylinders.”       Mom found an old green blanket we use only when we have guests and gave it to me, Bentzi’s father who was a contractor brought wood planks from one

Tubi Theatre

      “You can’t trust the people in that building,” said Dad about the southern building. “Most of them don’t work or go to school. As you can see, they fight amongst themselves all the time and I would be happy if you don’t make friends with them.” I personally didn’t like that idea; I liked to make friends and give everyone a chance. But Dad said and so I didn’t. Dad and I were busy setting up his new Jeweler’s desk. This time he had it made by a professional. That heavy desk we had built from the woods we found on the beach was dismantled and put away. The new desk had drawers and a nice leather apron to catch the cuttings of the gold and even a nice light and a lot of new tools. I loved looking at dad work. He made all kind of jewelry. I saw him make rings, chains, earrings and even crosses. I think it had a calming effect on him. I wanted to make some too. But Dad told me never to touch the tools in his desk. The tools I had were toy tools. I got them when I was very young, they


1965       “Are you ready?” asked mom. “We have an appointment with your new school, you don’t want to set a bad impression before you start.” We had a long walk ahead of us. The new school was closer to downtown Netanya. We were about to move to a new neighborhood.  “I wish we were staying here” I said to mom.  “I know,” she said. “Me too, but you saw the landlord decided he wants to move back into this house and your Dad has found us an apartment. It is going to be our apartment, no more paying rent.”  “Yeah, but all my friends, and I will have to start over at another school.” To myself I was thinking about that blond girl I met on our class trip to Tel Aviv. I will never have a chance to be with her in the same class.  “You will make new friends.”  “I hope so.” The new school was called Be’eri” after Berl Katzenelson, a Zionist leader who started the Israeli Union. The school was located on “Be’eri street and right next to the Union’s Medical Center.   “See”, said Mom, we will need

Swimming Champion

      “It is time for me to tell you about your uncles,” said Meme Milli. I loved Meme Milli, she is the best person I have ever met. You can never do wrong with her, at least when it comes to her grand kids. Even when one of my cousins stole some money from her. She just gave him more money. The  “Jukitta”  story was actually hers. She told it to me a few times, but, the most favorite were the stories about my Dad and his brothers. She didn’t tell me much about her daughters except that they were very pretty.     “After my husband, your grandfather, passed away, your Dad had to take over many roles. One of them was to take care of his brothers and sister. Yes, I had some help from the husband of my older sister Mayssa. If I need help disciplining the kids, he would step in. What I didn’t know was that he also spoiled them. When your uncle Claude was getting into a fight with the neighborhood kids and usually lose, he would run crying to my sister’s house, and she would give him a cook


   Long time ago in a land far, far, away lived a small beetle, “Jukitta” was her name. Dad started to tell us a story. We were all sitting on the floor around him in Aunt Marie’s Back yard. It was one day before Vivi’s Bar-Mitzvah”. Vivi was there with his sister Inez, his brothers Avram and Motke, My cousin Batya and her baby brother Ofer, My cousin Yudit and her brother Haim, and even Momi Uncle David’s don and his baby brother Ranni. Our eyes were all looking at My Dad’s direction listening to his story. I heard this story already before, even from Meme Mili yet I always loved it and anyway, Dad was a great storyteller. Nd now that he had a little wine to drink, he was a little funny too.     This was late at night after a very eventful day. We were in Ashkelon an old city in the southern part of the Israeli shore. It dates back to the Philistines. Remember the story of Samson and Delila? Well, it happened there. On the shoreline stretched an archeological park. Many cactus plants


    “Nanou, Avi” Mom called to us, “Put a pile of underwear, socks, your nice Shabat shirt and pants, and a few changing cloths. We are going on a little trip for a few days. I will pack all of it in a suitcase.” Mom and dad planed a trip for the whole family to Jerusalem. I never was in Jerusalem. I knew people from Jerusalem. Do you remember “Yehoshua HaParua”? We will be visiting him and his family.      The way to Jerusalem was not an easy trip. We had to take a bus to the bus station. We had to stand in the isle because it was full. From there we took another bus to Tel Aviv. On this bus we had to make sure we sit right behind the bus driver Avi would get seasick and throw up all over. In Tel Aviv we took a short bus ride to the train station. The station was crowded, and it was hard to find a good spot for all of us to sit together. My brother and I had to run along the train and look for a few empty seats for all of us.     “I want to sit next to the window” exclaimed Avi. “No p