Bomb Shelters and Romance

The kibbutz I used to work on was dotted with bomb shelters. There was one about twenty feet away from my front door. From the outside, it looked like just a low pile of black rock, roughly shaped like an egg on its side, half buried in the ground. The shelter had a door on one end, opening on concrete steps leading down into the darkness. Below, the shelter was a bare room stocked with a few essentials. There was nothing specifically glamorous about that bomb shelter. However, there was a vague romance in it for me, in that it possessed the connotations of midnight dangers, planes screaming by overhead, and air raid sirens going off. That was exciting stuff for my nineteen-year-old self.

That, ladies and gentlemen, is yet another key difference between men and women. To a guy, a bomb shelter can be romantic, in the older, more historic sense of the word. To a girl, a bomb shelter is just a bomb shelter. (Yes, I realize I have just opened myself up to charges of stereotyping, sweeping generalizations, etc.)

In some ways, those bomb shelters resembled tombs. Only, instead of your dead body getting locked away down below, sheltered safe and sound from the land of the living, you’d lock yourself up down there, breathless and waiting for the all-clear in order to return to the sunlight. I still dream of that bomb shelter, the black rock baking in the Galilean sunshine, the light shot through with dust and the scent of eucalyptus trees. May you all have a bomb shelter or two in your life.

2 thoughts on “Bomb Shelters and Romance”

  1. I can relate to this post! Worked in a moshav though not a kibbutz, same age as you, at 19 and though I didn’t find bomb shelters in anyway romantic, I can relate to the imagery and agree that we need a few of such in our lives…… places to hide, places that make us dream and are safe…….

    1. I didn’t know you worked out there too. Did you enjoy it? I was way up in the northeast, fairly close to the Syrian border. Excellent and profound memories.

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