What springs into mind when you think about Siberia? snow? Gulag? wasteland?
Scratch that. Siberia in the summer is a completely different experience.
I was in Varanasi, or Delhi, or Jaisalmer.
“I can’t believe they’re playing Yehudit Ravitz!”, was the first thought that occured to me when the song had started playing.
And then my mind emerged out of the book I was reading, and I remembered I’m not in India, but rather in a crowded coffee place somewhere in the midst of the Dead Sea hotels area.
“So how’s being back home? What are you up to?”
Anyone who’s ever embarked on a long journey can testify – You return somewhat different.
And then Yael has arrived.
Sometimes a moment’s significance becomes clear only in retrospect.
The more I travel here, the more I feel confident about it. India is so different from Israel, but it’s a difference that has already become somewhat familiar. Walking in a market as the only foreigner, stare back, and order chai at a street stall – it’s already a daily routine.
My feet hesitantly taste the chilled sand. The beach is completely deserted at this time of day. It’s just me, the sand, the waves and the stars.
You don’t just travel in India. You breath it in.
It took me quite a while to get here. Years, actually. This is how it happened.
“I want you to promise me something – while I’m away, keep sharing and updating me. Don’t think I’m not interested just because I’m travelling somewhere”
I’ll be leaving soon. I’ve started to face it upfront.
‘So what do you wanna do?’, I was suddenly self-pondering again, and then I realized I was limiting the range of possibilities. The answer ‘should’ be a type of job or profession, while the real answer is ‘to travel’, or even ‘to wander’.
At some point, the conversation topic became dancing. It all ended up with three Israelis dancing Resam Phiriri, and a bunch of Nepali teenagers dancing Macarena for the first time in their lives. Now that’s what I call cultural exchange.