Saturday, 30 July 2011

Hey Dude!! 1982 the year of great changes....

The year began in Las Dunas Resort, Ica, Peru. My father took us to this sunny city so when we can spend the New year's eve in the biggest party ever that I remembered. The whole complex was decorated with ballons and cocktails, champagne, and beer came in and out of the venue. I was only 14 so I could not drink but Occasionally, my father got me some to drink. I was Happy.

There were not many teens in the party but I was still happy. My only companion was Lolita . His father was the hotel manager and she was send by her mother to spent time in Ica. She was 19 and already was famous peruvian top fashion model. We talks beside the pool that night. She complained that She would miss Lima social life and Ica nothing happens.

The party was on full swing but she was right. The party was for Viejos so we waited for the fireworks and continued talking.

There was a night club with current hits in the resort . We went and were alone drinking what we could get. I had a lot of screwdrivers and she enjoy sipping champagne. We danced a slow and romantic song and got close to her.My hands were holding tight her waist and I stared with passion. I kissed her. As we got a chance to breathe, she step back and slap me in the face. It hurt me for several days. She run away and ignored me for the rest of the holiday..I was happy boy...The boy had stole a kiss from Lolita.

We got back to Lima and my father told that I would work the Summer in the workshop as a apprentince. I worked half of the shift. Normally, my jobs were to clean with petrol all the carburetors. I did some suspension repairs in VW bugs and finally I was helping hand in the engine repair sector.. Jimmy Kopelia smelt to petrol and loved it.

As soon as I finished the work shift, my mother was waiting to take me to the beach. During the weekdays, we went to Herradura beach. Weekends, It was Santa Maria beach or El Silencio Beach depending my parent's social calendar.

Jimmy Kopelia liked either Herradura or Santa Maria. There were big waves and Herradura was a challenge to my morey boogie bodyboards. Dressed with OP shirts and a lot of Hawaian Tropic, I began to have my own social life.

Before the summer was over, my Oma called my father urgently. Her sister in Boca Raton, Florida was dying so all the family traveled to Florida. We spent about six weeks in a Daisy Inn Motel near Her sister's house. It was great. We went to many places. I remembered that We visit Disney World, Epcot center, some water games attraction, and the Kennedy space center. I ate a lot of burgers and fries and my favourite dinner was Denny's..A lot of sunshine but too hot and humid, It was Florida Weather. We got back three weeks into the new school year. I had no books, and I had no idea what will happen next. I was only a teenager with a tan and big smile.

My first day of 1982 school year was a thursday morning. I went to my assigned locker without uniform and I was late to class because my mother had to explain to the dean why I miss three weeks. My mother talked and talked.. and until the dean was bored...By boredom, I was allowed to get back into the boring routine.

Hello Natalie!

Jimmy!.. What happen to you?. We though you were gone..

and then she told me

We are going to Israel to live for six months. All 70 15 years old prepared ourselves for once only lifetime experience.

In May of 1982, we went with our uniforms, with peruvian and israeli flags, to the Jorge Chavez Internation Airport. We board our Air France flight to Paris. We had to make a plane changeover the next day so we stayed at the airport. Because of security, we were restricted to the hotel. Jimmy Kopelia heard that some of friends went to Paris for a late night walk.

Our next flight was El Al Paris to Tel Aviv. In the plane, I had my first kosher meal. It was terrible like any inflight meals.

The next six months, we were going to spend together in Alonei youth camp. The israeli government prepared a lot excursion, trips, seminar and Of courses, study sessions. We had three Peruvians teachers to supervise us So we did not study at all. I learned more about Israeli life by travelling with my friends.

Once a month, the school decided to give us a weekend to visit relatives. I had some but I was not interested. We decided to have our scapegoat. We told our supervisors that we were going to this friend relative in a northern kibbutz. We were not.

The first weekend, Jimmy Kopelia and his friend went to Old Jerusalem. Our accommodation was a backpackers lodge. We did not mind.As we arrived in shabat, there was nothing to do. We took a cab and told the drivers to take us to the Jewish quarter. The drivers stared us with crazy look. We did not why?

As we arrived to the Jewish quarter, some ultra orthodox Jewish were waiting for us. Jimmy Kopelia though they are placing the welcome mat instead they tried to stone us. I ran as fast as roadrunner. The rest of the day, we spent time in the arab market. We ate there and went to see the Christian quarter and Via Dolorosa. We had the chance to pray the following day in the Western Wall. High emotions felt to all of us.

On another weekend, our trip was to Tel Aviv, Israeli cosmopolitan city with golden beaches. We stayed in run down youth hostel. the room was for 12 person only so it was only first come basis. I remember that two o three of our groups had stay in another room. They did not like it.

The trip had a purpose. We already were about two months living in Israeli and we need to get laid. Despite of being a shy boy, I was a picked as the leader to get prostitutes. Jimmy kopelia was the only person in the group to speak some English and Hebrew.

Our first attempt was in the golden beach strip. There was a lot of five stars hotel. I remember that I approached a hooker in the Hotel bar. We talked and she agreed to charge us one hundred dollars per guy. I had to get a hotel room in the area and no group sex.. I went back to my friend and told the agreement. They said fuck you . Jimmy Kopelia though of leaving the group,. I had the money and she was a fit Russian blonde but I stayed with my friends.

Then, I stopped a taxi and asked the driver. Using hand signals, some English word and few Hebrew, He understood that we were looking for sex but we had very few shekels to spend. At the end of the strip, the driver took us to a rural park. He went straight to a girl he knew. We had sex with the girl in the middle of a dark park. The cab driver got a freebie.Jimmy Kopelia does not want to remember,

As we got back from Tel Aviv, the school decided to give us one month holiday. On this occasion, we stayed at the camp. There was nobody except a peruvian teacher to supervise. During one day, We escaped to the local store and bought Vodka and a lot of orange juice. The planning was bullet proof. One of the rooms was empty of all beds and desks. We put mattress in the walls and floors so we cannot get hurt.

That night, Jimmy Kopelia drunk two bottles of Vodka with Orange juice. It was full drunkenness until we heard somebody approaching the building. One of the guys run into the professor. Total panic. I remembered that Crazy horse and I run into the back of the building. He told me that It was my fault and I punch him in the face. I do not remember more but I woke up in my room.

Still in holiday, we were bored and we decided to escape to the beach..We slept in the beach and had no clothes to change. It was great weekend until we came back to the youth camp. The dean waited for group to return. We were caught red handed.

My parent arrived few days later. They had planned a trip around Israel and a cruise through the greek islands. Our school mates were praying for Jimmy Kopelia and Morado, my cousin. In the dean office, Jimmy Kopelia remembers my parents listen to the dean' speech.My father laughed. and I was assigned extra Sunday work. My father told me to get my suitcase. He had hired a van and we were going to spend the next three weeks travelling all around Israel. It was an incredible trip. Our tour guide was EL GORDO, from Argentina.

As we drop our tour guide, we went a cruise that took to Turkey, Athens, Mikonos, and El Cairo. We visit a lot of interesting places such the pyramids, Mikonos golden beaches, Mountain climbing in a Donkey, and a lot of ocean. The places were great but the cruise was full of sabras. The human smell was terrible. I though all these Israeli do not how to use a Brut spray.

We comeback late about two weeks into school work. Natalie told me we though you were sent back to Lima.

In October, the trip was over and we were in Lima's grey weather. That Saturday, I asked for the car. Few weeks later, I had broken the BMW automatic gearbox. Jimmy Kopelia was not a boy any more.

The year ended with another trip to Ica for new years eve party. Lolita was not there. I was happy . I met Nany..

Jimmy Kopelia

1982...Israel and Peru... Both are land of magic, history, culture, and adventure

Sunday, 17 July 2011

Homenaje a mi Opa y Oma

Era una tarde de la primavera de 1936, Heinrich estaba ocupado en la tienda. Administraba la tienda cerca a la frontera,

Litschau un pueblo fronterizo y ubicado en las montanas, era el hogar de Emil Robistech y sus cinco hijas, Martha, Hertha, Ida, Erna y Frida. Ida era la segunda y la mayor Martha habia emigrado a Londres..

Me conto Frida que Martha se habia enamorado del hijo del noble del condado..Se habian empezado a cortejear pero la dos familia se opusieron..El noble se quedo y Martha fue mandada a un familiar lejano en Londres...
Preocupados por Ida, Emil contacta la casamentera judia de Vienna. Ella indaga y recomienda una familia de profesionales con buena educacion y situacion economia. Asi, despues de unos meses, Heinrich Wertheimer Weiss, joven recein graduado de estudios de economia, viaja a Litschau en su automovil con chofer.

Ida y Heinrich se casan y empiezan a formar una familia.. Deciden quedarse en Litschau donde Emil le entrega unas de sus tiendas y la casa a mi OPA.. Fruto de su amor, nacen Hans y Alice.

Esa tarde de primavera, llego la unica hermana de Heinrich, Mali con su esposo, .Joseph Fruhwirth, conocido tambien com Onke Pepe.Tenian planes de salir del pais..Los austriacos nazis eran cada vez mas y empezaban a agredir a los judios. Ya faltaba poco y Austria seria incorporada al Tercer Reich.. Se discutio y como todos los judios habian miles de opiniones..

Frida me cuenta...

Se organizo una salida por la frontera checa y pudieron salir del pais pero fueron agarrados..Los checos los devolverian a la policia austriaca y la suerte de ellos era una loteria..Pagaron para que Mali y su esposo no regresaran.. Mi tante Mali era liberal y Onke Pepe catolico. Los dos serian fusilados por cooperar con judios si volvian a Austria..

Onke Pepe y Tante Mali viajaron por toda Europa. No se donde pero lograron tener visas para viajar a Bolivia.Asi llegan a Cochabamba donde piensan comenzar una nueva vida. Onke Pepe no pudo vivir alli por que su corazon no lo soportaba. Entonces, descienden a Chile y deciden viajar rumbo al norte donde llegan a Ica. Despues se mudan a Lima y empienzan a formar un hogar en Miraflores.. Toda la guerra, Tante Mali lucho por traer su unico hermano al Peru.


Frida me cuenta..

Que al volver a lado austriaco, la separacion fue dolorosa. Ida se quedo con sus hijos en Litschau y Heinrich fue mandado a Vienna al guetho. Mi Opa busco la forma de reunirse con su familia y despues de varios intentos, logra escaparse a traves del desague. Los guardias le disparan y lo hieren en la pierna. Huye al bosque y comienza su travesia hacia el reencuentro con mi Oma.

Como llegaron a Inglaterra desde Austria, sus anecdotas se quedaron al olvido.

Ya en 1937...El gobierno ingles los reeubica en Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire..Les asigna un pequeno bungalow cerca a un canal.. Mi abuelo consigue trabajo el aeropuerto militar de Hatfield y mi Oma se ocupaba de la familia y trabajaba como cocinara en el refugio para judios austro alemanes.. Una labor que ella preparaba cientos de menus al dia. No se que turno trabajaba.

Mi Oma estaba contenta.Todas su hermanas habian escapado Austria y vivian cerca de ella. Sus padres decidieron quedarse y al final sus destino fue la muerte en algun campo de concetracion.

Al haber no maternidad ni hospital en Welwyn, Nacen Rita y Roy en St Albans.. Cuidad que vivo en el presente.

Alrededor del 1946, Mali consigue visas peruanas para Heinrich y familia. Les envia un dinero para los gastos y pasaje en crucero en tercera clase. Heinrich decide tomar la oportunidad ya que su unica hermana le habia contado de la amabilidad del peruano. Era como una tierra prometida despues del sufrimiento que habian pasado en Europa.

Asi que en 1947, la familia Wertheimer desembarca en el puerto de Callao.. Nunca regresaron a su pais natal y cuanta veces le pregunte a mi Oma pero sus recuerdos quedaron en sus almas. Supe de lo que paso cuando en Cambridge, mi tia abuela Frida, la menor de la hermanas me lo conto.

Mali se encargo de ellos los primeros meses. Trabajaron juntos en la tienda de Larco y Shell en el antiguo barrio de Miraflores..Me cuenta mi padres que en su casa no habias lujos. Mi padre era un chibolo y le gustaba ir al cine pero no se podia. Entonces Roy se iba a los quioscos de Miraflores y compraba los chistes o comics usados.Miraflores recien crecia y habia bastante construccion. Asi que mi viejo, Roy, se ganaba sus centavitos alquilando los comics a los obreros de contruccion civil. Todos empujaron el carro para salir de la pobreza y se forja la empresa automotriz de un sol a otro sol.

EN 1951, en el circuito de Chachi Dibos, en la bajada balta, en una carrera automotriz, El Ford de Hans empieza a rodar cuesta abajo. El coche termnina volteado con Hans inconciente y se incendia....Una tragedia para la familia, Mi tio Johnny sobrevive y con la ayuda de la comunidad judia peruana, pasa dos agnos en hospitales incluyendo 18 meses en Estados Unidos de Norte America.

Yo les debo a mis abuelos mi existencia. Sin su lucha y union.. la familia Wertheimer no habria exitido.

Siempre he luchado para acabar con los prejuicios.. es mas facil rechazar una persona antes de hacer el esfuerzo de conocerlo. Lo raro que nosotros, los judios, a pesar que hemos sido el blanco de esos ataques, lo hacemos tambien..

Jimmy Kopelia

Saturday, 9 July 2011


Dear Stacy,

I will never forget you. You left me with a broken heart and profound mark on my soul.

Those nights that we were alone in my room, watching Falcon Crest. I wanted to tell you that I love you but you had eyes only for him.

We went shopping and to the beach. I took you to the doctor and offered my friendship and support.

You turn your back on me and did not listen me. His seduction was stronger than your will.

And you walked to the twilight zone.

Say no to drugs... No drugs, Stacy.. NO!!

and you always cried Yes...

I love you, Stacy but I will never find you and your soul.

Jimmy Kopelia
San Diego, California...Conquistadores Dorms, SDSU.. 1987


Querida Stacy,

No te olvidare. Me dejaste una huella profunda en mi corazon.

Esas noches en que estamos solos en mi cuarto, viendo Falcon Crest. Queria decirte que te amaba pero tu tenias solo ojos para el.

Ibamos de compras, a la playa y te llevaba al doctor. Te ofreci mi amistad y ayuda.

Pero me diste la espalda, y te fuiste con el. Su tentancion era mas fuerte que tu voluntad.

Y te perdiste en un abismo sin fin.

Dile no a la droga...Dile no....NO! pero tu exclamabas siempre SI

y te fuiste con el donde jamas te podre encontrar.

Jimmy Kopelia

Carta al Senor Presidente Electo Ollanta Humala

Senor Presidente Electo Ollanta Humala,

Estimado Senor Humala,

Muchas claman injusticia y solucion a su probreza. La riqueza no se crea de la noche a la manana. Es el fruto de un trabajo arduo y constante. El pueblo peruano lo apoyo y lo eligio. No desaproveche esta oportunidad. Si quiere cambiar el pais, comienze con educarlo.

La ignorancia y falta de una buena educacion es la primordial causa de la probreza de mi querido Peru.

Hace unos meses, vi despues de mucho tiempo, una persona que hacia malas acciones contra sus seres queridos y enemigos. En su cara, se reflejaba todo lo que habia hecho. Con solo miralo, Veia su amargura en su rostro.

Le cuento esta anecdota..porque los peruanos nos quejamos de la corrupcion en el estado. Pero me pregunto si esta es la faceta de nuestra sociedad. Por cual, nuestro lideres siguen y son la conducta normal de nuestra sociedad.

Hace un tiempo, fui a tramitar un papel en el Ministerio de Educacion..El local era un desorden y por supuesto, en el caos, siempre alguien se aprovecha de cobrar una coima...

Ese caos burocratico, me hace pensar que todos los pocos recursos del presupuesto de Educacion son desperdicados..

No se peleen por quien asuma los cargos de los Ministerios.. Eliga su gabinete en cuestion de merito.

Senor futuro presidente. Yo no vote por usted por que pienso que es un populista pero le doy el beneficio de la duda.

Apoye una revolucion cultural donde el pueblo peruano aprendera a tener educacion, principios y valores..No tanta burocracia y mejor entrenamiento para los profesores..

Con el debido respeto, Saludos Cordiales,

Jimmy Kopelia

Apoyemos por una oposicion constructiva y fiscalizadora