TEL AVIV (Jan. 15)
A “Stock Exchange of Ideas” is the name popularly given to the group of old and young Jews who congregate at a partifcular corner of the park in Rothschild Boulevard, under a particular shady tree hard by Herzl Street. They discuss polities and whitttle sticks the whole day long. The place is an open-air intellectual mart for the free barter of views and news.
Some distance away in Allenby Street there is a burly Brush cop on frequent beat who can direct you in the maze of this rapidly-growing city-where streets jumo into being overnight-in passable Hebrew with a Cockney twang.
There are two of the sights of the famous Jewish watering-place that are never mentioned in the daily news. But they exist.
To the crowds of people burrying to and fro on their business or pleasure, bent on selling land # the best price they can command or getting down to the beach for a hasty dip or hurrying to a lecture of social philosophy, many of the scenes that visitors regard as unique are just a familiar part of their daily life. To them thew drooping tree with its bunch of comtroversialists beneath is just another corner-store from way back home, and the spectacle of a British hobby in blue speaking comprehensible Hebrew is as usal as his counterpart in Whitechapel speaking Yiddish.
But there is romance in this workaday city. No other metropolitan centre in the world can vie with it. For here is a place where there are no churches, no chapels, no missionhouses, and no saloons. On the other hand, there are synagogues galore, and if ever an ecctesiastical history of Tel Aviv is written, its houses of worship will be the subject of many an interesting human tale. There is no problem of gathering a minyan here. All you have to do if you want to get married under religious law is to go out in the street and grab the first nine men who corss your path on the sidewalk.
“Only for a minute,” you plead.
” It’s a mitzvah.”
Everyone is ready to do a mizvah in Tel Aviv, from making a fouth at bridge to lending you a modest sum until you get a promissory note cashed at one of the couple of humdred banks.
One of the reasons that the residents of Jerusalem look down with superiority on the Tel Avivians is that the city is never quiet. After ten o’clock in Jerusalem you cannot meet a soul in the streets; at ten in Ten Aviv, people begin to realize that life is gay and vital, and they continue in their funmaking until the wee hours. At three in the moring, the street-cleaneers come on duty, a prelude to the daytime congestion. They use special machines because of the large amount of sand that, in spite of macadam roads, still sirids its way on to the smooth surfaces.
Near the park fire station and Red Magen-David ambulance outfit. The firefighters are all volunteers. They serve the neighboring Arab town of jaff as well. When the siren sounds at the station, the firemen jump out of bed or our of the cinema and rapidly man the two engines.
At the ambulance stationm there is also a first aid clinic with a trained nurse in attendance for monor mishaps.
Most people seem to live in the streets, say the supperior Jerusalemites, If Tel Aviv has two hundred bank and credit societies, it certainly has nine hundred cafes and restaurants where clints spend their odd time. A goodly proportion of these lounging places are down on the beach, a stretch of Tel Aviv that presents a sparkling, picturesque spectacle on Satbbath mornings and holidays. You do not ask your friend to meet you on the seachore; you are merely surprised not to find him there.
And then the language. H#ew is, of course, the official tongue, and the boardings are a delight to the eye. Cinema shows, Habimah and Ohel performances, meetings, malted milk, and other diverse matters and things are the billboard’s daily fare. At the moment, Tel Aviv is having its German phase. The shokeepers naturally turn to all their customers in German. The history of settlement in Tel Aviv may be traced by its language phasse. In the early days it was French, influence of the Alliance Israelite Universlle education. Then came Russain, the intellectual’s chosen form of intercourse. In 1925-26 Polish blew in with the mass immigration, and English slowly came into its own around that time as Americans and Englishmen made a determined bid for their own.
Now the texi-drivers, express-messengers, girl newspaper vendors, windowcleances, shop hands, and other hardworking denizens all seem to be German Jews. They speak Hebrew; it is a matter of pride with them to study it assiduosly. But they are delighted at a chance of lapsing into mamma loshen-sorry, Deutsch.
That traffic cop on hor#eback, dignifiedly controlling an unparalleled movement of cars, buses and camels is a native Jew. If he will allow a peep into his notebook, it will be found to be kept in Hebrew; the change sheets at the dations are in Hebrew, too.
The future taxpayers-and taxes are a chief topic for discussion in this municipally-minded town-trotting about their juveile pursuits are sun-tanned and sturdy. A polo shirt, a pair of shorts, and strapped sandals is the regulation kit here for young and old alike most part of the year. Few of the children and youths here will speak Yiddish, although they understnd it fairly well; nor will their Sephardic coevals indulge in Ladino or other Jewish jargon. “Daber Ivrit!” is their scornful #ort if approached in any other language than their inimitable own.
Busmen here are all members of a city wide co-operative. They are planning a huge garage and a residential quarter of their own on the most modern lines. Six million passengers were carried last year, and the cry now is for bigger and better buse. Many people from the semi-urban settlements and the colomies further afield.
The shops all anything that can be had in America or Europe, for everything is made here. Tel Aviv stands or falls by its many factories and workshops, and the industrial establishments here employ over 10,000 hands. A tie-pin to a tractor is the range of products. The colorful Levant Fair will soon be opened in its spacious grouds near the meeting of the river Yarkon and the sea, and will be a remarkable panorama of the industrial and commercial range of this city.
JACKSON HEIGHTS CENTRE TO CELEBRATE BIRTHDAY
The same rituals employed by a boy observing his Bar Mitzvah will be observed when the Jackson Heights Jewish Centre celebrates its thirteenth anniversary on February 18.
Following the religious rites, a forml dinner and dance will be held and whch Progessor Louis Finklestein, progessor of theology and registrar of the Jewish Thological Semianry will be guest speaker. Professor Finklestein, noted author and orator, is the brother-in-law of former Attoney-General Bentwick of Palestine.
Rabbi Aromon E. Cohen, spiritual leader of Long Island Centre, has been his pupil at the seminary.