jewin' the fat

Israel: A Retrospective
August 13, 2009, 10:18 AM
Filed under: Comment, Israel, Zionism | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Experience is that marvelous thing that enables you recognize a mistake when you make it again. — F. P. Jones

Going through the list of things-to-do when you are overseas, the top of the list for this traveler is always experiencing the local produce. The food, the music, and of course, the men that make your travel experiences memorable. My girlfriends were always open when talking about their sexual exploits. From giving and receiving advice on how to give or receive, whenever, where ever; we could always rely on each other for a little pillow talk. So when I sent a message home detailing my own exploits, it was met with a mixture of applause, horror, and genuine ignorance.

See, when your mates are engaged/married/otherwise, the general assumption is that all talk of sex, sexual habits and experiences becomes a dull slice of 10-minute missionary.

That is, of course, unless you are half a world away, single and getting some

As I was packing up my house in Jerusalem, I stumbled upon an old bank statement envelope, bulging inappropriately with scores of names. Ehud, Yaniv, Ori, Mike, Tal, even Constantine (and one Ronit). I’m actually too nervous to count them up exactly and see just how many shy, obnoxious or deluded men slipped me torn up tissues, old receipts, or demanded a piece of paper from me, just to hand it back awkwardly a few minutes later. But, in the interests of disclosure, and remembering the good, the bad and the unexpected, here’s a little run down.

There was the Security Consultant who taught me martial arts … The Ex-Marine who was 6″2 and had a knack for dancing … The Bartender, who’s girlfriend knew the whole time and said nothing … The Two month relationship, which fizzled out, ending, to my horror, quite amicably … The Secret Service agent with a body like a rock, who asked for my number, and surprised me by calling … The (Oh yes.) Bartender-Turned-Yeshiva-Student, who turned up at work and wound up at my place … The Broken Guy, who’s life story broke my heart wide open, and the Jewish Swahili Prince whose religious philosophy inspired me, and whose drunken behaviour terrified me … French guy, who offered to take me home and share me with his two French mates … The Lone Soldier, whose religious lifestyle threatened to put a swift end to any potential, until, well, he did … The 21-year-old who couldn’t take no for an answer, forcing my workmates to take turns escorting me home, and of course, the arrogant Suit who did the unthinkable and got hitched two weeks after we hooked up, to his pregnant ex-fiance …
It was a veritable smorgasbord of blonds, brunettes, dark skins and light, blue, green, but mostly brown eyes. In their late-teens, twenties and thirties, orthdox, reform and born-again Jews, Irish Catholics and Russian Atheists. Hard bodied, and often hard-headed, troubled and trouble-making, the best days and nights I had was being entertained by the local, and international wildlife.

For this traveler, they are the most vivid memory, the biggest, hottest and least regrettable mistakes I made, and the finest tour guides of a country’s highlights I’ve ever had the pleasure of experiencing.

And of course, the novelty of my return home did even result in a couple of Australians offering to take me on their own personal tour of my home town. And who was I to deny them?


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