Deserted / by Susie Lubell


The last few days have been outstanding. We've mainly stayed in the south going on short hikes, looking for water holes in the desert (because it's unseasonably hot) and playgrounds in the towns we pass through on our way home. The kids are doing great. We took them to the old city of Beer Sheva to buy pita at the oldest pita factory in town. And around the corner is the little Turkish style stone house where my husband lived until he was three. The door his dad built some 37 years ago is still there.




Today was supposed to be another wonderful day. I was supposed to meet a lovely woman that I 'met' though ETSYChai, an ETSY team open to anyone but primarily for Jewish sellers or Israeli sellers or sellers of Judaica or all of the above. I had mentioned to the team that I would be in Israel and few people said they'd be happy to meet me. In the end I planned to drive to Tel Aviv and my husband would drop me off at Nahalat Binyamin which is a great craft market on Tuesdays and Fridays. I love to go even though the stuff there looks about the same year after year. I don't care. It's nice to have a strong coffee and relax and then walk around looking at the goodies. And Tuesdays are always less crowded than Fridays, the only other day it's open. In the end only one woman could meet me, Lisa, which was fine. We seemed to have a fair amount in common - moved to Israel from elsewhere at some point (though we left), young kids, artist, home studio. She makes wonderful papercut art - cards, little boxes, notebooks - beautiful little treasures. Go see her shop and blog. I was excited to meet her. But last night right as I was going to bed I started to feel horribly nauseated. If there's one thing I can't deal with it's nausea. So I basically didn't sleep. And this morning it felt worse. So I emailed her that I couldn't make it and maybe we could reschedule for Friday.

And then I got the call. Where are you? Gulp. She had taken her kids to school and gone straight to the train to meet me. I don't know if you know this about me, but I hate when I fuck up. I HATE it. Not that this keeps me from doing it all the time. But I don't like it one bit. Especially something like this where someone else is involved. I've actually been on her side and wasted my time getting somewhere only to be left hanging. I am usually very conscientious. I don't know why I just didn't call! And now I'm feeling awful because, well I'm nauseated still, and also I deserted this nice person at a cafe in Tel Aviv, so now I have to feel bad about that until I stop feeling bad, because that's what I do. My son has this same quality and I hate seeing it in him too. He hates making mistakes and when he makes them, he is harder on himself than I could ever be.Although he often feels like his shame is enough and he doesn't deserve a secondary punishment for, say, hitting his sister. Not sure about that one.