Maskless in Madrid

Met by hummus, united by love. 
This is the photographer Felipe Romero Beltrán, taken yesterday from his home in Madrid. We met ‘On the Hummus Route’.

Concerned about the situation in Spain, we texted him to check how he’s doing, and he immediately replied: “Unfortunately, we ran out of masks, the situation in Madrid is critical and the authorities insist on leaving it for people with symptoms, so I’m not using one at the moment (fortunately).”

Felipe is currently writing a Ph.D. thesis on documentary photography at TAI University of the Arts Madrid, and he’s the one that shot the beautiful photos in our Jerusalem chapter of the Hasidic dancing in trans, which led me to share with him my personal story of “arbes”:

When I went to ‘yeshiva’, we would go once every few weeks to spend the Sabbath at our parents’ house, where, on a Friday evening when a baby boy was born to someone from the community, the men would meet together after the Shabbath dinner to sing songs, drink, and eat “arbes” – chickpeas cooked in water and seasoned with lots of salt and pepper. Those songs that we sang still sound in my ears.

I promised Felipe we’ll meet soon, in Madrid, when these crazy days are finally over. I hope we’ll go see Picasso’s Guernica and Clara Peeters at the Prado Museum. We met by Hummus, and united by love.

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