This year in Israel, if not in a rebuilt Jerusalem…
Instead of cooking (and cleaning and planning and shopping, in no particular order ever), I got to play with kids and enjoy the beautiful weather, even if it wasn’t necessarily beautiful. Yes, we were surprised that it did rain last Wednesday, even if just briefly!
Instead of doing a second seder, we got to travel and see friends. And water my plant at home, if just for a short visit before returning to be at our kids’.
Instead of savoring the taste of matzah, we went to a Gymboree in Efrat to attend a mini-Mimouna, a North African Jewish celebration of returning to eating bread.
Instead of worrying about everyone getting along, I knew they wouldn’t, and then they would for when it mattered. And then we could go home when we had enough.
Instead of sitting around the eighth day of Pesach, overeating, we went into Jerusalem to the Old City. We met different people we hadn’t seen in eight months; two years, and forty years. Instead of synagogue, we had synchronicity.
Instead of worrying about the community and who needs what, we got to think about ourselves and what we need. And worry about the whole world.
Instead of going to hear a speaker for Yom HaShoah, we’re meeting with the couple from whom we are buying our home and seeing what we want to buy from them. He is from Libya; she is also from a Mizrachi family; they have their own families’ experiences of hate and expulsion, which we will hear about.
Instead of looking at videos of the moment of silence on Monday morning in memory of the six million Jews who were killed, we will stand silent ourselves.