Growing Up With London

Then and Now

I first moved to London when I was ten. My father, a fifty-six-year-old widower, had gotten married to an Israeli expat, and his partner lived in the city.

Better food in Britain. Hounslow, Greater London.

I’ll never forget how diminished I felt moving there from Tel Aviv. Everything was so big it made me feel much smaller – physically and intellectually.

One of the most curious things about it was how Middle Eastern Britain was. Arab men and women, in keffiyeh and hijab, were everywhere.

Much more so than in the parts of Israel where we had lived, where the Arab presence was receding. Their London counterparts were clearly on the rise.

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Photograph courtesy of Joel Schalit. All rights reserved.