About Me

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Haifa, Israel
Divorced and independent and still looking for Mr. Right in the back of the fridge.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

May I See Your Portfolio?

I wish I could say I haven't written since August because I found someone. But I can't and I haven't. 

I wish I could say that it was only because my online shop, Carmel Gifts,  keeps me busy 24/7 but I can't and it doesn't. 

I have been busy with health issues with one of my children, unfortunately, but this will pass too, and it will no longer be an excuse as to why I haven't written for months on end. 

The real reason I haven't written is because I am sparing my loyal readers the humorless diatribes about how truly hard it is to find someone suitable after age 50. 

I was recently introduced to someone who was head over heels crazy about me, offering the whole relationship package, who even lives on my favorite street in Haifa. He immediately started inviting me to do relationship-y things before we had built up to that. (No, I don't want to come over for a bowl of soup. Take me out to a nice restaurant you idiot).  Lo and behold, I realized what it was like to date a woman who wants a relationship. Pretty scary stuff. 

I know that if I had felt that whole love at first sight magic (crap?) I would have gone with the flow. But I didn't and I didn't. 

For ages, I never bothered to answer mail on sites from men that were just inappropriate from the get go. Now I do, because I am tired of being nice. I just answer them why they think I would interested in someone separated (yeah, right) with no picture who can only describe himself as "live and let live". Uh huh. I see real potential there. 

I answer the 30 year old who asks if I've ever been with someone aged 30, with a yes, when I was 30. 

I answer the 65 year old that I am not interested in being anyone's younger woman, but if he were 85 and sitting on a great portfolio, we'd have something to talk about. 

I answer the 40 year old single man who wants a family, that I am not interested in waiting until he meets a 35 year old woman with a ticking uterus. 

I am still formulating an answer for the woman who tells me that I am a closet lesbian and that if I would just meet her I could discover my inner truth. 

I am teetering on the brink of not caring if I meet anyone or not.  But who knows? Maybe someone will show up in time to pull me back from the edge. 

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Smile Smile Smile.


I should never be left alone with a computer when I'm feeling lonely. I will join another dating site.

I am always sure that this new site will be my saving grace. That among the tree-hugging masseurs, middle aged cradle robbers and 30 year olds that think they can teach me something, I may find myself starring in a Romantic Comedy. I will find the one who will have made it worth the wait. 

As time goes by, I realize that chances are I won't find him on this new site or any other. Chances are I may never find him. Chances are I may kiss a lot of frogs and none of them will turn into princes. 

I've been told that if I smile a lot the universe will smile on me. Maybe it will, maybe it won't. But for goodness sake. Sometimes I just don't have a smile in me. 

Can't the universe start the smiling? I promise to smile back under the right circumstances. 


Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Count Backward from Ten


I'm back. I wasn't really gone. Just totally distracted with a zillion thought bytes as well as undergoing minor surgery AND not being able to drive for two months.

PLEASE do not ask me to give details about my life without driving. I am doing a fair job of not pulling my hair out by the roots, not pummeling civil servants about the head and chest, and not engaging in scathing diatribes against the passengers on public transportation for their intrusion on my personal space.

After all, public transportation is the reason that personal space was invented.  

The minor surgery went well. I am desperately trying to relive that experience when, within the course of a split second I am looking around the O.R. and then "poof", I am waking up in recovery. 

I would like to believe that my shameless flirting with the anasthesiologist was not the reason they blacked me out. Regardless, I would love to attach myself to an I.V. drip with that stuff during my next bad date.  

It's just as well they blacked me out. Gynecological surgery is never an event that makes a gal feel pretty. 

Speaking of pretty, I got my hair done, had other hair removed, and generally, have been all dressed up with no place to go. 

I am distracted from this sad state of my love life by my pet projects, this blog being one of them. However, the wheels are churning much too fast in this little head of mine, and more often than not, I get nothing done rather than a lot done. I managed to slow down the thoughts and sift through them one by one. 

Here are some of my conclusions:

  • I will not feel bad that I don't write in my blog as often as I used to. Twice a month will be fine. And anyway, you wouldn't want me un-inspired, would you?
  • I don't expect to have a date every week. I will, instead, be grateful if a week goes by and I am not called an uppity, ugly bitch just because I didn't want to go out with someone. 
  •  I have decided that it is NOT OK if my online shop stays in the hobby realm. I need it to move into the earning realm. 
Most importantly, sometimes I find the wherewithal to remember that even if I never find my partner for life, I have 3 children who, while not calling as often as they should while I sit in the dark, are still pretty wonderful. And for that I am blessed. 

Friday, August 3, 2012

Just a Silly Love Song


Just when I thought I had until February 14th to avoid holidays meant for lovers, they hit me with the Israeli response to cherubs shooting arrows,  Tu B'Av, the 15th of the Hebrew month of Av. 

Apparently,  in post-Biblical times, this particular full moon heralded  the occasion for women to dress in white and prance in vineyards, so they could be chosen as wives. 

The radio has been playing love songs all day. 

I was OK as they played a sexy Samba. 

I was even OK when they played The Girl rom Ipanema. The muse of that song is 67 year old now. 

Oh, but then they played It's Too Good to be True and I turned off the radio. 

Most of the time I don't think too much about it. I sleep sprawled on the bed and I get to hold the remote. 

The rest of the time, I'd give up all the advantages of being alone in a heartbeat, just to have someone who will make my heart skip a beat. 

Who knows. Maybe by February 14th the cherubs will find their way to Haifa and I'll have plans for dinner and the Samba. 


Friday, July 13, 2012

Missing Persons


I think I'll be a hitman.
I can make the strongest, most macho man disappear. 

No violence, no debris.  

I disarm him with my charm.
I weaken his knees with my smile.
He drops all his armor at the sight of my beauty. 

He is where I want him. In love with me at first sight; reciting sonnets. He searches no more for his soul mate. 

He is exposed. His jugular and his achilles, his soft belly.

I could whack him at that moment but my methods are more subtle.
Just one date with me and POOF, he's  gone! 

Never to be heard from again.


Thursday, July 5, 2012

Pass the Pretzels

I moved from suburbia to the city so that I would have things to do when I was alone. 

So, when I was feeling restless one hot summer night and I decided that an adorable Miniature French Poodle is as good a conversation starter as any, I put on my casual best, cleaned my dog's butt, and decided to take her for a walk in what passes for the center of activity around here. 

After driving in concentric circles for 20 minutes looking for a parking spot, I was beginning to regret the effort I made to go out, when I could have been splayed braless on a sofa watching reruns of Friends. 

If I hadn't found a parking spot I would have cancelled my date with myself. An all time humiliating low. I would have relegated the "all dressed up" part of my evening to a practice run for getting dressed for work in the morning. 

But reminded that I was armed with a Poodle, I persevered into the streets teeming with couples. 

As it turns out, a Poodle is a great guy magnet for gay men, and octogenarian Russian immigrants. 

Convinced that this was not going to be a Prince Charming evening, I, Poodle in leash, determined that this was the perfect time to try out my fantasy of going to a pub by myself. 

My dissociative plan involved posing as a business woman from America just getting some fresh evening air.

As my dog stopped to sniff urine on a street lamp, I realized that I didn't know any normal business women who travelled abroad with their dogs. 

Plan A aborted, initiate Plan B: I went to a pub with an outside patio and tried not to think of Looking For Mr. Goodbar. 

The whole experience was pretty painless. No one really cared that I was alone, and I was grateful for a cold beer and pretzels instead of yet another cup of coffee. In any case, the elderly woman with the pill box hat, taffeta fucshia cocktail dress and cleavage out to there was getting all of the glances.

Anyone know where I can get a more macho dog?


Friday, June 22, 2012

Non-Caloric Solutions to a Bad Day

I got stood up today so I bought a flat screen TV.
This in lieu of ice cream during a strict diet that I am actually sticking to. 

Ice cream is cheaper than a flat screen but the purpose is the same. Make me feel better when someone else makes me feel like crap. 

Please no comments that I shouldn't let someone else make me feel bad about myself. Let's maintain some proportion. It's not an overall self esteem issue. Just a short lived self pitying wallowing. The ice cream effects my hips and the TV my wallet, but I can provide a dozen proofs that I deserve them both. 

I look in the mirror and I say, "who is this stunning lady and why does she get stood up?" Again, a dozen reasons why I don't mind being free and independent but when push comes to shove, I'd rather not be alone. 

I wish I could say that I am going home now with Ben and Jerry to watch my flat screen TV, but I am going to buy lettuce. I have also been ordered to stock the mess hall with enough snacks for 12 teenagers who are marching into  my  living room to rendezvous with that 15 year old girl/woman/hormonal terror with braces that lurks in my house because I'm her mother.  

Why do i feel like I'm losing a war of attrition on all fronts? It's OK. For now I'll wallow. After the weekend, the generals in my head and heart will regroup and set out with new marching orders.

Hope I don't come back with a purple heart. 

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Supersize Me


Lots of adventures in the last month. 

"Adventures" might be overstating it, lets settle on challenges:

Challenges to keep my wits.
Challenges to keep my dignity.
Challenges to hold my tongue.
Challenges to not beat someone about the head and thorax mercilessly. 
Challenges to not bake and eat cheese cake.

Successes: I didn't beat anyone about the head and thorax mercilessly. 

I had a few dates. I paid. And when I didn't pay we had a lovely walk on the beach. 
Spare me. 
I want someone to wine and dine me. Not whine and supersize me. 
So not generous of me. So 1950's of me. Lots of things to do that don't cost money. But, crap. I do them all myself already.

I am trying hard not discount someone because I don't like the cuff on their jeans. But  6 inches? Really?

Is it so out of the question to want someone that makes my heart skip a beat, at least at the beginning? Someone who takes my breath away, even if just for a second? Someone who pays on the first date, even if it is old fashoned? 

I could be in a long phase, and eventually I'll get over it and settle for the next best thing.

Until then, I'll keep dreaming. 

Friday, May 11, 2012

Sounds of Silence

I think I'll get some cats. 

I don't need a port for a ship to come in.

I don't need a stable for a white horse.

I'll get cats. Multiple cats. Inbreeding cats. Cats who will lay claim to the sofa and the laundry baskets.

They will all have names that begin with Mr. and each one will remind me of a Mr. that got away. 

The cats will welcome me when I come home. They will circle my legs and purr. They will vie for my lap.

They will silently remind me of the other sounds of silence in my life:
  • The silence of grown up children leading their own lives.
  • The silence a teenage daughter suffering a monstrous mother.
  • The silence of routine.
  • The silence of my phone.
  • The silence of my inbox. 
Ahhh. The deafening silence of my inbox. 

No white smoke yet on which feels worse: no mail in my inbox in the myriad dating sites, or myriad irrelevant mails.

I hear a voice in my head (probably my mother's): "Lower your standards! you never know!"
  • I have already lowered my "looks" requirement from Ben Afflek to Woody Allen. 
  • I have already lowered my "education" requirements from University to No Spelling Errors.
  • I have already lowered my "conversationalist" expectations from Pithy Quips to Not Monosyllabic.
  • I have already lowered my "age range" expectations from Born after Woodstock to Born After Hiroshima. 
  • I have already lowered my "physical activity" expectations from Athlete to Ambulatory.
If there is any advantage to being divorced, it is the opportunity for a Do-Over. 

Is there anything wrong with wanting this Do-Over to be with someone who takes my breath away?

In the meantime, "I turn my collar to the cold and damp" and I wait it out. 

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Not Again...

On this, the eve of my 53rd birthday, I have been offered my complimentary glass of champagne from the owner of my favorite place. The place where they let me take up two tables and all of the cushions, no matter how crowded it is. 

I asked for my complimentary dessert, but the waiter said it was limited to pancakes. I don't believe him, but beggars can't be choosers. 

It's just hazy enough that I won't have to suffer through a beautiful sunset alone, but they are lighting the candles on the tables, which has the Pavlovian effect of making me cry.

I don't want to expand on anything else at this point. I'll let you know in a few days how I feel. 

In the meantime, I will start a new tradition and re-post my birthday post from last year. 

I'm sorry to say that it is still relevant.

Originally posted on TUESDAY, MARCH 29, 2011

Forty to Fortynine

Somewhere in the abyss between the constraints of motherhood and the inevitability of hotflashes, I turned 50. 

My first thought was this... "Shit, now all those guys who chose drop-down option of 'age preference for partner' 40-49 are going to miss me." 

I am like those digital clock radios from my childhood; back when digital meant you read the time with digits that flipped over on a hinge. I have flipped over.  All the numbers have made their rounds. The click is deafening. I am now 50 and alarms are going off everywhere in cyberspace. 

Every on-line dating site has celebrated my birthday with a fateful "refresh" at midnight. I have been relegated to the search results of the over 60s looking for a younger woman. No longer would I be an educated, non-smoker, 40-49 with a proportional body type.

How can I reverse this torture? Can I set my birthday back a few days? Is it too late?

The panic sets in and I change my birthday to next week. Relief for a few days. 

But ohhhhh. Not good.... Quick. look up when Aries is no longer Aries. We can't have a situation in which I am displaying STRICTLY Aries like traits when my new birthday is making me a whatever... this would confuse the shit out of the myriad of men that have me pegged as an Aries within 3 minutes of conversation..... 

And we don't want to confuse any more men. 

I easily could have gained another year of interest from the under 50 men who "love life" and are "ready for chapter 2". But I couldn't do it. I just couldn't contribute to that web of half-truths that are the world of on-line dating.  

So I chose to remain a 50 year old Aries. And a 51 year old Aries. And a soon to be 52 year old Aries. I'll keep my profile picture updated and (try to) stop thinking about the ones that got away. 

I'll devote my energy to being the best I can be as time marches on.

And with a bow to those men and women who choose to add years to their cyber life, I am almost finished writing the "New Translation of Internet Dating Answers". I promise to share it with you.


Friday, April 6, 2012

A Passover Blessing.


With the steadfastness of the changing moons, another Passover will be ushered in in a few hours. I am waiting for the eggs to get to room temperature. (A poor planning fiasco on my part that they weren't left out all night. At least I took the meat out of the freezer.) 

Passover is a favorite holiday in Israel. All branches of the family tree, the twigs and their spring buds, converge on one home, whose kitchen miraculously produces a spring bounty which will feed the masses and still be left over for lunch the next day. 

Despite the inherent joys of holidays, I have - in the past - known melancholy and sadness, at times when I was alone and the extended family home eluded me. More than one Passover over the years has brought me to the airport just so I could be with my mommy. 

Just over a year ago I was nursing a broken heart. Admitedly, under the circumstances, it never should have been out there to break. But it was and it did and creativity and other good things came of it. 

This year, this Passover,  I feel wind in my sails. I am propelled forward to new adventures.

I am 7 kilos lighter then I was a month ago, and watching that small weight on the doctor's scale move left every week.  My hair is a fab new color. I am convinced that all in all, I am quite a catch. 

So I won't tell you about the guy that has my interest, except to say that I also have his. And that, in and of itself, is special. 

It is not a given in my life that every man I fall for also falls for me. Nor is it a given that I should expect no less. 

For this past year I have been working on that elusive truth - that mutuality is the key. 

Mutual emotions, and mutual expectations of where they should lead, is the minimum criteria before  indulging in even a fleeting thought of a glimmer of a trace of a hope of a relationship. 

It is the absolute understanding that what isn't here now should not be waited for. 

I have been working so diligently on making these words true in life that maybe the universe has finally put me on its radar for better things. Maybe something momentous will happen in my life. 

And maybe not. 

At the very least, for now, for this moment in time, I am feeling pretty good. I want to believe that by the time the Brisket is finished, I will be quite the happy camper. 

In the meantime, while I bake the flourless cake, while I add enough matzo to sink the knaidlach, I wish everyone a very Happy Passover. And like the Israelites out of Egypt, may we all find our own personal Freedom. 



Friday, March 23, 2012



I had my hair done today. Not just cut. Done. (At the risk of being crude, at least someone is doing something to some part of me...)

The man with scissors said to me. "That's it. You've passed the point where you can blend blonde highlights with white hair. It's time to dye. Trust me. You will look fabulous."


Immediate flashback to age 40 plus when I took the plunge and added blond highlights to fool the white at my temples. The highlights served me well until now. (Maybe until a little before now but everyone's been very polite.)

And now I'll tell you something that I swear is true.... a few days ago I had a dream that I had red stringy dyed hair and long dark roots. The scary part of the dream was that I actually left the house that way.  Ask anyone who knows me, my hair is my thing... Over the years, if I had been as pedantic about my weight as I had about my hair, I would be quite stunning today.

Back from flashback and nightmare, I decide to trust this man with scissors.  So Honey brown it is. With a streak of blonde highlight in front to ease the separation anxiety from the aluminum foil  that I had grown fond of over the years. 

Two hours later, I am transformed into a new woman. But which woman?

  • The woman that has to get her roots done every few weeks so that the nightmares don't come back?
  • The woman who is over 50 and wishes the march of time could be replaced by a slow waltz? 
  • Or maybe I'm the woman who has spent a relaxing Friday morning transforming herself into someone who looks a touch younger? (Not too young, please. I'll have to wear skinny jeans) 
So, a new hairstyle, a snazzy pair of sun glasses, a very beautiful Friday morning, and 4 kilos Iighter. 

This weekend may turn out to be OK. 


Saturday, March 10, 2012

Ladies of Hadassah

I wish I could just jump in to this entry from the middle of my train of thought because I don't have an elegant introduction. Here. I just did it. 

I've been away from blogging. Yet it is always hovering over me as one of the reasons I am distracted at my day job. There aren't enough hours in the day to do everything that I want to, or, more likely, not enough tooth picks in the world to keep my eyelids open at the end of the day when I get home from work. 

I have been devoting more attention to my shop, and less to my blog . But let's face it. When you get right down to it, both are serving the same purpose. 

Both my blog and my store keep me busy during those cuddly hours. During that free time that I am alone, that time I wish I could spend with a soul mate, or at the very least, someone who doesn't drive me up a wall. 

Despite the obvious disadvantages of not having a guy in my life, I am completing a tremendous number of tasks. Not to mention that I get to shamelessly eat peanut butter and jelly in front of the TV instead of setting a table and asking "how was your day, dear?" (still no white smoke on which situation I ultimately prefer.) 

I did have a date recently. A nice guy. A nice conversation. A nice cup of coffee. Nice, nice, nice. I came home and went back online to see if any new faces had shown up on the dating sites. I'm guessing that I'm not enthralled with nice. I know it should count for something. But I REALLY want the next one to take my breath away. 

I was grateful for the rainiest January Israel has seen in over 40 years. It makes it easier to admit that I didn't get out my pajamas all weekend (every weekend).

I cleaned up closets, I baked, I caught up on programs I had recorded. I watched movies with my kids. I worked on my store. And I finally filed all of my personal papers from 2011 that I had sworn I would file by the end of the year. 

Among the papers I came across was a certificate naming me a Life Member of Hadassah (thanks Mom). It came with a gold pin. 

I put the Hadassah Life Membership pin on my pajamas.

For the duration of the weekend I felt like a stunning socialite doing good for the state of Israel.  I was the scion of a perfect family and my progeny were given a perfect life, too.  

And then the weekend passed and I got out of my pajamas and dressed for work.  And I returned to reality.

And there you have it. Life as I know it is not always as glamorous as it could have been, nor is it as glamorous as other lives. But it is my life. And I am finally getting used to it.


Monday, January 30, 2012

A Winter Wonderland

I'm back. I wish I could say that, since I wrote last,  I've been swooped away by Mr. Right. But I haven't.

I've been distracted by my online store. I've experienced major entrepeneurial coups which are sure to change the face of e-commerce as we know it. Unfortunately, they all take place inside my head. 

I've also slipped into a funk here and there and found vegetating a satisfactory way to pass the evening. 

I know what has/had me down. My Life as a Thumbnail pretty much continues to sum up my experiences.  I wrote that entry months ago and I am fairly impressed with myself that my ideas remain relevant in my own little universe. On the flip side, I had hoped that this entire blog - sneaking up on a year pretty soon - would have run its course by now and STOPPED being relevant at all.  

I should have been spending this winter sharing body heat with my soul mate, rather than  searching for the thermal underwear I bought a few years ago. 

But rummage through closets I did, and the time was well spent. I found a lot of winter clothes that I had forgotten about. 

I will, of course, be buying new closets since mine shrink things.


Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Behind Every Great Woman


It's official. I can't have it all. I'm not sure what the proverbial "all" includes, but I'm pretty darn sure I don't have it. 

I used to think that I could do it all, but as it turns out, that's not true either.

For the better part of my adult life I juggled house, career, kids, husbands, ex husbands, pets, orthodontists, psychologists, teachers, doctors, neighbors, beaurocrats, lawyers, idiots, rocket fire, gas masks, police, friends, enemies, family, ex family, clergy, mechanics, banks, and more; and not necessarily in that order; and oh yes, all in the middle east and all in another language. 

During the years, there were episodes when trouble seeped in slowly, yet sometimes it came in tidal waves. Either way, I clawed out of the debris ridden muck on my own. 

I have been making my way through life on my own for the last ten years. It doesn't mean I'm always alone or always lonely. It just means that no matter what happens, there is no one to blame but myself, no one to take credit but myself, no one to depend on but myself (trusting my siblings and mother will allow me a little poetic license this once).  

The good news is that there is suddenly a little strength left over for myself.

And in that residual strength, survival mode gave way to creativity. Reaction gave way to action. And amazing things began to happen. 

Among them, and not in this order:

  • I ran a book club.
  • I started a women's networking group.
  • I turned 50 something.
  • I bought an apartment.
  • I started writing a blog.
  • I started an online shop selling Israeli gifts outside of Israel. 
It is ten months and a week since heartbreak and my first blog entry. The experience of this thus far has been cathartic at least, and a joyous discovery of creativity at most.

So here we are today. No man to run home to. But I am too flooded with ideas to notice. 

I may have noticed that there is nothing to eat in the fridge, but I ordered pizza while optimizing my blog and shop for search engines.

I may have a load of laundry to do, but I'll do it as soon as I write this letter to a potential supplier.

I maybe should go to the gym, but I'll stop over at friends and show them how to add paypal to their shop. 

I maybe should go to bed because I have an early meeting, but I'll just add this one more item to my shop, it's too pretty to wait until tomorrow. 

Is it coincidental that when no men were around a few kind words of encouragement became the wind beneath my wings? Is it coincidental that the multi faceted generosity of a few good friends slash mentors unlocked an entrepeneurship that I thought beloged only to brave others? 

I am finally ready to combine my creative worlds on the front page of this blog. 

In my world of my shop, Carmel Gifts, I don't go on dates, but I make business calls. I don't write love letters, but I send emails to potential suppliers and customers.

Like absolutely everything else in my life, no, like life itself, the shop is a work in progress. 

So at the risk of self indulgence, I invite you to come in and shop around. Everything is made in Israel and everything is an expression of someone's creativity. 

You'll find amulets, Judaica, jewelry, weaving, soaps, silk, and more and more and soon to come more.

So you know that old expression "behind every great man there is a woman"? 

I'd suggest that behind every great woman there is no man.