Departure and Arrival:Family Reunion in the Land
For hours I have been wandering through the port of Haifa, under the broiling sun, looking for an obscure address; finally I meet a passerby who knows his way around. After giving me directions, he leans towards me with his wrinkled, sunburnt face, and, addressing the obvious newcomer like a member of the family, asks in that tone of affectionate mockery which belongs only to Yiddish: “Woman, why do you look so unhappy?”
“Because I’ve been sweating in this sun for three hours.”
“Pooh! We’ve been sweating in the sun for thirty years and we’re still going strong.”
In the streets, in the buses, cafés, public places, you find much less politeness and much more real warmth and helpfulness than in other countries. It’s an ill-mannered family, but it’s a family.
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