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Traveling Alone

Life Story Club Contributor

April 7, 2020

I have an interesting positive story to tell about travel. I’m 82 and last year I decided I was going to go to Israel, I’d never been, and I wanted to go by myself. I don’t like tours. So whenever I talked to anybody about going, they’d say, “That’s terrible, it’s dangerous.” All this negative stuff, but I was determined to go. So I stayed at a couple of youth hostels. I stayed in Jerusalem and Yonatan, which is in Tel Aviv for two weeks and I had a marvelous time. The people in Jerusalem were so kind, and in fact, there if there’s a very long line for something, as an older person you can go right up front. And whenever I asked for directions they were sweet and kind, and as far as the political situation that people were open about it and also the different areas of Jerusalem, people would come into other areas and live and they were neighbors.

Like I met this taxi driver who was Jewish and he lives in the Jewish area and he said a lot of his neighbors were Arabic and it was perfectly wonderful, we get along. So there’s a lot of bad press about Israel, and I found that out, and if it wasn’t for my daughter living here, I’d moved to Israel. Yeah, I had a wonderful time exploring around at my own pace and I always felt safe. People would say, “Oh, it’s very dangerous.” And it wasn’t dangerous at all. I mean I don’t go out at night, but the people from bed and breakfast were very, very helpful and it was beautiful and it was just a positive situation. So don’t listen to other people, just go and follow your heart.

I just went to Jerusalem and Jaffa, which is the Arab part of Tel Aviv, and I stayed at those two places, then I walked around and it was just terrific. And also when I was 19 I went over… My mother always emphasized travel, travel. So when I was 19 I was living in New York. I’m from San Francisco. I was born in San Francisco, living in New York, and I took a Yugoslavian freighter over to Morocco and traveled all through Europe, but I was hitchhiking and staying at youth hostels, but times were different then, it was safe. I stayed there for six month. I meet people along the way, but basically I traveled alone. I enjoyed it a lot.

Children Always Make Me Smile

Life Story Club Contributor

April 7, 2020

Children always make me smile. I don’t have to know them, I just have to see them. And, walking down the street, kids in strollers at very young six months, five months, I try to make eye contact with them, and some kids will just practically lean over and try to make some eye contact. And some people, kids will make eye contact and want to continue the eye contact. Other times, kids just aren’t interested.

Also, kids going on their scooter, some kids will just get off their scooter and say, “Hi,” and try to make some conversation and they just have tremendous sense of humor, tremendous freedom, tremendous … just being naive, and fresh, and alive and wanting to learn and without so much negativity.

I guess, I’m a little child like myself, so I can sort of identify with them. And, they’re just wonderful. I used to volunteer some time at a food co-op in childcare. And, I mean, the questions they ask and one day it was Father’s Day and I said, “Oh”, I said, “Did you wish your father a happy Father’s Day?” And there were two sisters I was talking to, and they said, “Oh, no, we don’t have a father. We have two mothers.” And I mean, they’re just so accepting and so sweet, and kind, and just lovable. So when I see a child, I just smile.

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