Thursday morning: I wake up and check the news this morning to see what happened last night and then head to the doctor’s in north Tel Aviv. I’m 24 weeks pregnant — yes, with a Jewish-Palestinian baby. My physician in Florida, where we live now, has advised me to keep up with my medical care in Israel even though I’ll only be here for six weeks to freshen up my research for the book I’ve just sold.
I’m a few minutes late to my appointment . When the doctor’s door opens, the woman who is scheduled after me steps right on in. She shuts the door in my face. I check the list next to the door and announce the time of my appointment aloud.
“So, it’s your turn,” the other women who are waiting say. They urge me to knock and assert myself.
I knock and the patient who just entered opens the door. “I’m sorry,” I begin, “but I had the 8:40 appointment.”
She shrugs, smiles. “But you were late.” And the door slams shut in my face again.
“Israelim,” Israelis, one of the women smirks.
When the door opens again and the patient emerges, I’m quick to make my way into the doctor’s office. We talk for a few minutes about what tests I’ve already had in the States, their results, and how I’m feeling. At my American doctor’s insistence, I’ve brought my medical records with me. I offer them to the doctor. He says they’re not necessary and then he sends me on my way to get checked for gestational diabetes.
As I’m leaving, there’s a commotion in the lobby. A Filipino man has followed an elderly Israeli couple into the building.
“They hit my car!” he shouts in English.
No one responds.
“You hit my car!” he tries again to the couple.
The clerk — a Palestinian citizen of the state I spoke to on my way in — goes about his business. Another elderly couple puzzles over a piece of paper.
“You hit my car and you’re angry with me?” his voice indignant.
I step onto the sidewalk just as the Filipino man is heading towards parallel parking.
“Look,” he says, pointing. “I was there, they pulled in and hit me, and then...Read More