Zelda Harris
Five on the 100 aliyah from UK list!

Facing up to it

From the day I turned 90, I have had a problem.

Basically, I still had plans to travel as long as I could. My journey to see my granddaughter Anna and her husband Ben who live in Australia was booked for March 2nd, 2020 and I now realise, that I will not go that road, as it were.

However, the question is whether I’m going to plan other holidays? The answer is yes but.. now I will need a travelling companion, as well as a load of hopefully wasted money on insurance.

At this age to worry about money for day to day expenses is absurd on the other hand what is left for me to do? Make bigger donations to charities which I support, buy my grandchildren and their kids frivolities that they already have or do not necessarily need?

Don’t get me wrong I am not wealthy! However, I am rich in that I am blessed with love and genuine kindness and help from many sources, especially my family. Bli Ayin Ra, which means “without the evil eye”

I am happy to still be able to write and I have finished my Life Story which will be hopefully published soon.

I am distressed at the political situation and the rise in road fatalities and casualties against which I fought. I did not fight alone but with all the wonderful members of the Metuna organisation which included past and present prominent Professors of Public Health, Dr. Jaakov Adler an expert in mass casualties and Professor Elihu Richter of The Department of Public Health, also Professor Charles Greenblatt and Prof Avi Rifkind from Hadassah HU. Not forgetting the contribution of Professor Gerry Ben David z”l of Nachal Soreq and Zvi Weinberger the iconic Head of the Jerusalem College of Technology. Not to forget Dr. Hershy Katz, Civil Engineer from the Jerusalem Municipality.

Not one of the aforementioned sought glory and headlines. They were only interested in “doing good.”

So what happened? Along came Or Yarok who were financially in a better place than we were. Most of our money was donated from people who had lost family members in road tragedies.

I will not mention names.

When my husband’s long-term illness reached a critical level I had to give up my activities.

Sadly, the person to whom I had given my trust, since I felt that she could do more for the cause than I, resigned on the basis that she did not have “my passion” for it!

Today with tremendous pressures on the community as a whole and the political roundabout from which elected (not by the people) members are playing poker with the public mindset and collecting a salary that most of us cannot aspire to, I dread to think what will come next.

I love this land and its people but we need to realize that almost all of us carry baggage. These are the experiences of our own upbringing or the histories of our families some of which are very sad, even tragic. We are not exactly like other societies. However we are fortunate to have our own (shared?) land after 2000 years and only we who live and breathe it, can make it a positive example to the world. One can call it DU KIUM which means co-existence. I call it finding the common denominator.

Shabbat Shalom!

About the Author
Zelda Harris first came to Israel 1949, aged 18. After living through the hardships of the nascent state, she returned to England in 1966. She was a founding member of the Women's Campaign for Soviet Jewry. In 1978, she returned with her family to Israel and has been active in various spheres of Israeli Society since. Together with the late Chaim Herzog, she founded CCC for Electoral Reform, was the Director of BIPAC in Israel, and a co-founder of Metuna, the Organisation for Road Safety, which received the Speaker of Knesset Quality of Life Award for saving lives on the roads and prevention of serious injury. She is now a peace activist, blogger for Times of Israel and is writing her life story.