Across the divide

I had  coffee this morning in a cafe with erotic lesbian art on the walls. The waitress was a work of art herself, with elaborate tattoos, (and her underwear,) on display beneath her rather uninhibited attire. I got chatting to a the young woman at the next table (with a pierced bottom lip). An Israeli, who has now lived here, in Australia, for ten years, she describes herself as a “failed atheist”. (She still prays whenever she flies!). We had a fascinating conversation, about arab-Israeli politics, and about the topic of her thesis, male circumcision. By extension, this involved also female circumcision (or genital mutilation, to use the more emotive term common in the press.) If only more voices like hers, youthful, well-informed, articulate and unprejudiced, were able to be heard in the fraught public debate about topics such as we discussed so amiably over coffee! I trust she also enjoyed my contribution to the dialogue.


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