Lifestyle features

Lost your job? It could just make you happier

By Alex Kasriel, October 22, 2009

Peter Marks ran his family bakery business in north London for 22 years. But the combined competition from internet shopping and a new Tesco Metro forced him to sell up in June 2008. He continued to manage the store but earlier this year, it closed for good and the 51-year-old became jobless for the first time in his working life.

Marks is not alone. Jewish workers have been victims of “operations streamlining” or “office downsizing” since the recession hit, just like everyone else.


Why I let a stranger look after my kids

By Lianne Kolirin, October 15, 2009

Would you entrust your children to the care of an au pair you had met, interviewed and hired over the internet?

When a friend first suggested the idea, I was horrified. How could I leave my kids with a stranger I had never laid eyes upon? A businesswoman and herself a mother of three, she assured me the web offered good, affordable childcare and that she had recruited several reliable au pairs this way.


Israel's Abramovich uses football to unite Jerusalem

By James Montague, October 15, 2009

For the past four seasons the terraces of Betar Jerusalem’s Teddy Stadium have noisily exalted their saviour. When Arkadi Gaydamak, the controversial Russian-born tycoon, arrived from nowhere to buy the struggling team, he was heralded for restoring the club’s former glories. The fans ignored his colourful background, and lapped up the success. “Arkadi is the Messiah!” they would sing as he bought them back-to-back championships.


Kvetcher's guide to Yiddish

By David Schneider, October 9, 2009

I’ve always been fascinated by Yiddish. Though it wasn’t my mame-loshn (“mother tongue” — the name Yiddish speakers give to Yiddish), it was my Mama’s loshn. As a kid she used to do things like stand over me when I was eating and say: “Shlof gikher, ikh badarf dos kishn” (“Sleep quicker, I need the pillow”).


A new Middle East peace plan - playtime and pickles

By Anne Joseph, October 8, 2009

‘We must teach the children to live in peace,” says Muhammed, “and we must start when they are young children at school.”

Muhammed — who lives in an Arab village in the Jerusalem hills — is speaking from experience. When his three grown-up children were still at school he took the brave step of enrolling them in a ground-breaking scheme encouraging contact with Jewish children.


Finding the solution to an irritating problem

By Sarah Ebner, October 1, 2009

A single scratch of the head is enough to make normally sane parents panic. Their fear ... headlice.

Only a few weeks into the new school year, and far too many children (and some unfortunate parents) will already be suffering from the dreaded lice attack. Gone are the days of the nit nurse, and also gone are the days when lice affected only a small number of children. New research suggests that between 10 and 20 percent of Britain’s 4 million primary school children will have headlice at any one time — up from around one per cent in the 1980s.


Our Jewish moments

By Miriam Shaviv, September 27, 2009


Am I Jewish? asks man abandoned as a baby

By Mel Poluck, September 24, 2009

On a cold afternoon in December 1960, WPC Tegwen Curl received a call to proceed to West Heath Court flats in Golders Green. When she arrived, she was greeted by an unlikely scene — a group of middle-aged, mostly Jewish neighbours crowded around an abandoned baby no more than four days old, lying on the floor.

The baby was not crying, and although very cold he had been recently fed and was healthy. The social worker assigned to the case reported that the child had probably not been delivered by a midwife — there were no records of him being born in hospital.


Rabbis at the edge of the world

September 18, 2009

The lost Torah scroll
We stopped off at the home of a woman in Kralivets. We spoke for a while and ate apples from her garden. She then told us that she had a Torah.

Now, whenever anyone here says they have a Torah, they most likely mean a book with Hebrew writing. But we weren’t rushing anywhere so we told her that we would love to see it.

She came back with a wrapped-up scroll. It was a detailed sketch of a deer being attacked by wolves. In the corner was the date: 1943. We flipped it over. It was an entire section of a Torah scroll.


Found — the lost Sephardim of Texas

By Daniel Kalder, September 17, 2009

The American West was built by settlers carving a life in the New World. Over a century later, that pioneering spirit survives in the form of 39-year-old Daniel Ramos. But rather than pushing open a new frontier, Ramos is blazing a trail back to a very old world, reconnecting with his identity as Anusim, one of the lost Jews of Texas.