Child of the North Seeks Storm




What do you do when you’re upset by someone or mad at someone? Do you listen to Coldplay? To Heavy Metal? Do you attack your punching bag? Write an angry letter which you never send? Personally, I leave the house and go on a walk. I don’t aim for a destination, I just let my furious feet and my wandering mind guide me.

Yesterday afternoon when I left my Tel Aviv apartment at 5PM in the aforementioned angry state, I literally walked into a storm. The wind was slapping my face from both sides, my hair was swinging around my head and blindfolding me, my bag was threatening to fly away. It was chilly for Tel Aviv standards –  15 degrees Celsius – and the wind was sweeping big clouds across the sky. First I stopped for a cappuccino on a kiosk-style cafe on Ben Gurion Boulevard. I like this place; waiters there lovingly mock my Hebrew and add a chocolate powder coating to my cappuccino without me having to ask. Then I aimlessly walked North along Dizengoff Avenue where my mood cheered up as I imagined what occasion I may wear the many ballgowns to that adorn the shop windows there.

But there are only four compass directions you can walk in, and if you walk West (as I did after an hour or so), you inevitably hit the sea. Or the sea hits you, as it did on this stormy evening of Marie’s March Madness on the Mediterranean. What I saw there on the coast made me plug my headphones out of my ears and plug my ears into the sound of the sea. I was raised on an annual “summer”trip to Germany’s northernmost point – the island of Sylt which lies in the tumultuous North Sea. And so when I saw the Mediterranean up in a storm, this made me unnaturally happy. Tiny droplets of salty sea water flying into my face like little daggers, the sound of the wind sweeping up all else, the loneliness of being the only person outside … I felt right at home, reminded of glorious childhood days on Sylt.

Besides cool photos, there is also a moral of this stormy story. When you’re mad or upset, and emotions are boiling up inside you, don’t let them build up in the cramped space of your mind or your bedroom walls. Go outside. Go explore. See something else so that your mind and your heart are preoccupied, maybe even inspired. And for God’s sake, go experience a storm by the sea! It’s quite extraordinary.