Shabbat in Jerusalem

Yeah, yeah, yeah. It is shabbat and I’m in Jerusalem and I shouldn’t be blogging. But I am, live with it. I’m having a wonderful relaxing time. After five GO GO GO days at ROI120, I have been getting some refua nefesh (re-souling) with Dubi’s family.

Yesterday we ran around Jerusalem. First to the Israel museum with his nephews. While he kept giving me permission to go see art, I stayed to watch the boys play in the exhibits or run between sculptures. Art is nice, but laughter is better than art. Or it nicely accompanies art. Whatever, it was fantastic. And we experienced a sculpture that I missed when we were there on Monday night with ROI120.

An underground marble room with walls that were 20 to 30 feet high. The ceiling has a hole in it that is maybe 18 x 18 feet. The inside of the room has a bench all around it and the wall is at an angle. When you sit, you are forced to look up at the ceiling and the image is whatever the sky looks like at the moment. It was a brilliant blue, just stunning.

After a wonderful asado in the afternoon, we went to a pre-shabbat concert near the windmill. With our backs to the west, we faced the old city and rocked out to a great band. It was all in Hebrew, but the band was so charismatic that it didn’t need much translation.

Back from the band, I went to shul with the men of the family. Or I walked there with them and then sat behind the mechitza in the women’s section. Shhhh, I liked it. The synagogue was very small and very full. The men sang with total committment to the songs and music. I’ve never heard anything like it. Yes, I had a very hard time following what prayer I was supposed to be on, but loved singing the entire Lecha Dodi. I mean entire, probably 8 minutes or so long. And, fine, I’ll admit that there was something magical about hearing the men prayer with so much energy but seeing it through the veil of the mechitza.

A lovely shabbat dinner followed and then a walk. If I owed you a note in the Kotel, rest assured that it is there in some form or another. Today I’m off to the shuk to pick up souveniers and other random things I might need. Tomorrow I’m probably heading to Haifa unless someone points me in a different direction.

Shabbat shalom.

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