The average Tel Avivan fell madly in love with the city at first sight. Yes, it’s true that the papers always described Tel Aviv as a bubble, and it was definitely nothing like the town he grew up in. But if Tel Aviv is a bubble, he thought, then he hoped it would keep growing and suck this whole damn country into it, along with the entire Middle East. Suddenly he’s meeting open-minded people in the street. Suddenly he has an Arab neighbor, an ultra-Orthodox neighbor, a gay neighbor, and they all say hello to each other. That hello can sometimes be cold, but he’ll take a cold hello any day over the curses and punches those people would probably be hurling at one another back in his hometown.
And at night, when he goes out for some fun, the restaurants and clubs are always open, there’s a lot of noise, a lot of action; everyone wants to party, no one is tired. And when he has had enough, all he has to do is walk a couple of blocks to the west and sit down on the soft sand of the beach. The city and the sunrise are behind him, the salty sea in front of him, and he knows, he just knows, that he’ll never leave this city. He loves it, loves everything in it. When he opens the paper, he’s likely to read that there’s a war going on, or that religious fanatics spit on a little girl because she was immodestly dressed. But all that is happening somewhere else.