Yakira Wiesel was the only girl on the crowded rooftop of a rickety bus. She was in Nepal, on a nine-hour ride, heading toward the Frozen Lake Trek. She heard some of the guys speaking Hebrew, which was comforting for a 20- year-old Israeli girl. When the bus began to shake, she turned to one of them and asked: “Can I lean on you?” Michael Azulay, who was 23 at the time, was happy to oblige. He recalls: “I immediately felt an attraction.”
They had been friends for about six years. Lauren Karmely thought she would marry someone like Michel – his name is pronounced the French way. Then she began thinking of marrying him.
Lauren had invited Michel to a Sukkot party, along with other guys, family and lots of girlfriends. They dropped off a friend and were left alone in the car. He suggested a cup of tea at Dunkin Donuts. “It wasn’t a date,” says Lauren. “It was just tea among friends.”
“We’re both neurotic Jews with roots in the New York area,” says David Jacobsen. “We share the same birthday, adds Lisa Schwartz. “And we have the same hair,” continues David. “We have hair solidarity.” According to the matching algorithm of an online dating service, David and Lisa were compatible.
In her classroom, Michal makes the rules and sets the example. But at a speed dating event, she evaded the guidelines and joined a workshop for younger women. The move changed her life.
At age 30, Michal Levi had already spent a decade on the dating circuit. She was on various mailing lists and received an email about speed dating – done differently. The program was called Hamifgashim (translation: meetings). “I wasn’t really interested,” recalls Michal. A married friend encouraged her to register.