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.