I bought this painting by the artist Tali today. It was an impulse purchase. I’m not given to buying things impulsively, as living for so many years with little money means I tend to spend ages thinking about every little purchase I make, even when I’m now on a full-time salary. But I bought it impulsively for two reasons. The first one is because things are quite terrible right now, from all ends, and it made me feel better, momentarily. But secondly, and more importantly, because the girl in the painting is the exact image of how I pictured a fictional character I loved when I was a teenager.

I remember reading a book when I was a teenager, visiting my relatives in Israel, who had black hair and was falling in love with a Russian immigrant. I remember one passage in which she was eating soup and he pulled her black hair from her soup. The perfect material for a teenage crush. But I was equally in love with her as I was with him (as you can only be when you are a teenager). The expression in the girl’s eyes is something I love too. It’s not often you come across a visual manifestation that aligns with a readerly one created by your mind. But when it happens, it feels like magic. This is reason enough to buy a painting, I think.

I hope that when I receive her in the mail, she will make me feel better – like anything is possible, and like big problems have solutions, and like magic is not lost in my life.