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Zelda Harris
Five on the 100 aliyah from UK list!

Forgetting and not remembering!

I am so fortunate to have a large family. I was an only child. My mother had seven sisters and three brothers. I wanted a daughter so that I could share with her, as I had with my mother. That was not meant to be. Yes I do believe that there’s some force which we cannot determine, which makes decisions for us. However with todays’ medical technology nothing is impossible and I think that its scary.
So instead of girls, we had three remarkable sons, each of whom who achieved individually, far more than my dear husband Leon z”l and I ever did. Each one in his own inimitable way.

The one thing we all have, had in common was/is a great sense of humour and empathy. Pranks and innate humanity and mime ability too, is in all of us.
I am also blessed with loving and caring Daughters -in- law all of whom strangely were born in the same year! Now a fussy and irritable and needy and frail old lady I look also to my friends who are all much younger than I and I could be their mum even grandmother! I am still dancing!

Do not let on to my Doctors as I am officially disabled. However how does one stay in the game if one has no stimulation or motivation in life? So the family are delighted that I keep busy. My full time Mitapelet Anni picks up the clothes I drop, takes me shopping and cooks like a trained Chef. She also reminds me to take my medication.

I simply hate being dependent. From the age of 8, during WW2 I was separated from my parents. London in the Blitz was not a place for kids or anyone really. THE LUFTWAFFE DID TO US WHAT WE HAD DONE TO DRESDEN THEY REALLY DID THEIR BEST TO BOMB US INTO SUBMISSION! So I had no choice but to take whatever came up albeit for my safety and presumably their peace of mind.
I remember most everything from my past. Even the cute little bottles of milk we received daily at school when I was really small.

I found it embarrassing not to remember simple things at first. However, one has to accept these inconveniences and not feel ashamed. Make a joke of it.
I am sometimes mortified when after setting times and dates with others I simply…forget or do not remember..is there a difference? I so miss travelling though. Being an Airbnb hostess for many years, I also miss the folks from overseas who stayed here. There’s a song that Botticelli sings “Time to say goodbye” It goes around in my head.

However I do not think is is yet! If I can still support the political party I belong to and make comments about causes that I believe in, I may have some purpose. I am also teaching a youngster English. I have this spanking new Electronic piano which I am trying to learn to play and Scrabble on line too. Also I paint and do collages with all bits that I find in our neighbourhood, or on the beach. Life begins at forty they say but it doesn’t have to end at ninety!

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.
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