I am on a mini break in my home country. And suddenly, this whooz of tiredness falls over me. I Am Tired.
When I take a sip of water from the tap and do not have to check the color of the water to know if I will drink it today.
When I do not hear bangs all day and do not have to wonder if it is gun shots or fireworks I am hearing.
When I do not hear helicopters or sirens at least for an hour.
When I am not stung by mosquitos, not startled by stray cats or roaches for a day.
When I do not have to wonder if I will bother or offend people with my clothes, my behavior, my faith.
When it is not foolish to be a Christian, or a moslim, or a Jew, but it is just who you are.
When I can read what is written and understand what is said. When the script is Latin and the words gentle.
And when nobody tries to jump ahead of me in line. I notice how extremely tired I am from those four little months in Jerusalem, Israel. Where all I have known is different. And I can not judge it as being better. Yet.
I am exhausted of not having to try, for a few days, to like it.
I met a girl. Her name is Sara. Or Sarah. Or Zara, I don’t know. We communicate through a translation app on my smartphone. She doesn’t speak English and I don’t speak Hebrew. We love eachother. I can not explain why.
She is fifteen years younger than I am and has just one child less. With her four children she smiles herself through life. Whether that is who she is or who she thinks she should be I don’t know. Her religious leader tells her to be happy, always. That mantra and the way she practices it does give me energy. A precious thing in my life. Energy.
I can not text her, nor can I leave a message on her phone. We can call, but the translation app does not work when we call. I fear her calls because of that. I often do not pick up the phone when she calls. Pelefone, she tells me, is the word for cell phone.
I feel so bad when I do not pick up the phone. But I still don’t.
Her husband translates for us sometimes. Sara’s husband speaks English. But he can not look me in the eye. His religion forbids direct contact with me. His religion makes him fear my overpowering sexuality and makes him fear wanting to jump on me and rip my clothes off. Or I think that is why he is not allowed to look me in the eye.
When Sara’s husband is home alone when I come by, he keeps his eyes on the wall while he speaks. I never know if it is me who he is speaking to. Or the wall. He is the nicest guy. Maybe he was even goodlooking one day. One day before he decided to grow side curls and a long beard.
I met a girl, her name is Sara. She is an ultra orthodox Jewish girl.
Ultra Orthodox Woman. She teaches me about God.
And the Hebrew word for Popsicle.
There is something about this town I don’t know how to describe. No. There are many things about this town, this city, I do not know how to describe. Jerusalem.
We moved here four months ago. With our five young children. With children, every day is new. Every day is a blessing and a struggle. With children in Jerusalem every day is… educational. Every day is different. Every day is a tournament in some way. Every day is a challenge.
Jerusalem. Centre of the world for many. The centre of my confusion.
Oh Jerusalem, do I love you? Do I hate you? Should I decide which one? Oh my Jerusalem, I just don’t know.