Relying on My Spiritual GPS

Course corrections from morning to night. I head for an Israeli bus station and end up on a train. Sometimes the busses I’m waiting for do not appear, as in “never,” though my phone app continues to insist that these busses and I exist in the same time and space. At other times busses appear that aren’t posted. Should I board them?

I’ve given up almost all my possessions. I don’t know where to live. I don’t know why I’m simultaneously enthralled and anxious and annoyed. There are too many decisions to make as I careen from one inexplicable weirdness to the next.

Yes, it’s crossed my mind that I could be doing a crazy thing coming here. Israel has 47,000 varieties of heat. I don’t speak the language. It can be absolutely impossible to find an open bank on a normal Tuesday afternoon. Someone tried to persuade me to move into a rental with the argument that it was located in a town that wasn’t targeted for rocket fire much.

But there are energetic forces here far beyond the mundane. This place is far more mysterious than material. This is a metaphysical oasis. There are answers here despite the fact that almost everything seems gritty and hard, most of the contemporary architecture is a bunch of cement boxes on sand, there’s widespread poverty.

My spiritual GPS brought me here and I still don’t really know why. As I try to find my path, passing through scents of cumin, roast nuts, schwarma, baking bread and chocolate, indulging in hummus so good it’s practically hallucinogenic, already tired of the proliferating flip-flop and cheap shirt stores, I realize that I’m becoming both more and less of the person I thought I was.

Most of my American habits (sleeping on organic cotton, eating organic food) make almost no sense here. But I am not a constellation of habits and I hope to transcend my circumstances. I hope I’m on the right path, despite the fact that I am constantly lost. I have many questions: who are the Bitter Brothers? Why was I led here? Am I losing things I need? Is it possible to simply exist as a soul? Have I lost my mind? Am I surrounded by miracles or chaos? You tell me.

About the Author
Sari Friedman's short stories appear in the Beloit Fiction Journal, Blue Lake Review, So It Goes, Satirist, Daily Freier, Ilanot Review, Huffpo Canada etc. The first chapter of her (not yet published) novel appears in the November 2020 "Woven Tale Press."