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I Raised My Voice Against Hatred. It Was Easier Than I Thought It Would Be and It Felt Good.


“They have the best Greek feta cheese you can get anywhere,” my husband said, pointing to the Middle Eastern grocery store around the corner from our house where he and his late wife used to shop all the time.

“It comes from France.”

Hm. Greek feta cheese from France. How enticing.

“I’ll check it out,” I told him.

Thus began, three years ago, my almost daily trips to that wonderful little corner of the world, the Middle Eastern market.

From the big sheets of warm-from-the-oven flatbread stacked next to the cash-register, to the six to eight varieties of glistening olives crowded together in bins under protective glass, to the boxes of fresh produce stacked on the floor all bearing labels from small California farms, to the colorful half gallon cans of imported oils, the marmalade from England and the chocolate bars from Germany, I have always managed to find something to buy.

Shopping there reminds me of the Italian delicatessens I would go to with my mother when I was a little girl. It has the same “other-worldly” feeling to it, including the you-can’t-move-freely-down-the-aisle crowdedness of it, and the friendliness of it.

I revel in all the different languages spoken around me, I love all the smiles with their heavily accented “How are you today?” greetings...