Today marks the fifth anniversary of our return to Israel. Our landing was tough having arrived soon after my Mom passed away and watching in the first months we were here my Fathers health deteriorate to the point that he died three months after we arrived. Living here continues to be struggle financially, but that has unfortunately been my fate most of my life. Moving back and forth between between Israel and US probably never helped that. This is my first experience living in Tel Aviv and I must say that while in my high school year book I have a quote that says that even though I was not born in Jerusalem, I have felt a Jerusalemite my whole life, today it’s Tel Aviv that I love more than any other city in the world. Becoming a Newsweek columnist with a column called Tel Aviv Diary has certainly cemented that relationship. The research for our App Journey Tel Aviv combined with my column has allowed me to know the city from the top( I interviewed the mayor) and the bottom( I have walked almost all the city adding locations to our App).
Being in Israel has also resulted in another change. Its very much in vogue today to write how people will need multiple careers. While that is certainly true for the future, that has certainly been true for me. While one hand I have been involved in the development of software for three decades and the writing of history even longer, what defines my prime activities in life has changed a number of times over the years. Much to my surprise and certainly not something that I would have guessed before we came, I am now more of a journalist than anything else. While having a regular column in Newsweek has certainly given me both access and a certain level of prestige, it was not until I started working for European economic web site, who are actually paying me to file multiple stories a day that it became clear that today I am primarily a journalist. I probably still spend more time a day working on software and history, but its become my writings that defines me today
I was worried about returning here this late in life, I was 56 when we came back and was concerned about being the outsider. That is the one worry that was unnecessary. The combination of having been in the IDF, having two children who have served, and having a third on the way has eliminated any concern in that direction. Of course it helps to be fluent in Hebrew and have a dog, but there is no question that I feel totally at home as if I lived in Tel Aviv all my life and am thankful every day that we live here. We have made many friends, and have access to all aspects of life in Tel Aviv. (Well almost every we will never be a 20-30 year old single).
One finally thought, none of this would have been possible without my family, Amy who has always been at my side and been my partner in everything I have done these last 25+ years and three great kids.