Equal Partners
by Roland Ezri

Equal Partners by Roland Ezri

Equal Partners

By Roland Ezri

"Women are the backbone of all societies. They do a substantial part of the work, and play a major role in raising the future generation yet they are largely powerless. The decisions that count are made by men and foisted upon women."

Writings by Roland Ezri

The Second Exodus – Israel – CCLXXIX. The Opposite Sex (2 of 5)

According to Moshé, my technique was totally ineffective; and a waste of time and money; that kind of advice was so typical of him; a diplomatic approach was fine with strangers, but not with your best friend.

This is approximately what he said:  “You’re now 24 and time is working against you.  I suggest you register with a matrimonial agency; there you’ll be dealing with a professional who has been bringing people together for a long time.  He then suggested the name of one such agency; the very one he was presently using.”

However, at 24, I did not feel it was time to push the panic button.  Therefore, I continued placing ads in the newspaper.

As I was placing one my ads, I happened to mention to the ad-taker that I intended to immigrate to the U.S. or Canada sometime in the future.  This is when that individual said, “What don’t you advertise in the Aufbau; it’s a German newspaper that is published in New York; the finest Jewish families subscribe to it.  You can kill two birds with one stone:  find a fine young lady that will help you get into either of those countries.”

Needless to say, I got all the particulars from this Good Samaritan; and before long I advertised in the aforementioned newspaper; twice.  I did get many responses, but the question was, “what then?”  We were separated by vast distances; how can we meet and get to know each other?

The Aufbau, as we shall see, would play a role in my life, but that would be in the future.

I continued chasing my tail a while longer, but eventually obtained the names of a few shadkhanim (matchmakers) from the newspaper.

I should clarify here that many matchmakers in Israel worked on a contingency basis.  You paid them only if a marriage resulted.  I believe that some required their fees upfront; but I didn’t transact with them.

The first shadkhen I dealt with was very informal.  He noted my particulars on a small card; and on the back of the card he listed my requirements.  The card then went into a wooden box.

At my first visit he told me that he had somebody for me, and that I could meet her right away!  She was an attractive Iraqi girl, and we met in a small office.  There she told me that she already had a boyfriend!  So why did the matchmaker bother?  And what did we talk about?

She praised the agency to high heavens.  Gabor (the owner) or Gabi as he liked to be called was a wizard; he had an instinct that permitted him to bring the right persons together.   Many couples across Israel owed their happiness to him.

By now you guessed that this girl acted as a lure.  She may have been an employee, and if so, she no doubt was in charge of PR!

When I asked her if she worked for the agency, she told me that she was a relative.  Some relative!  The owner was Hungarian and she was Iraqi!

I thanked her; said shalom to Gaby; and never set foot in that agency again!

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