The air in Halifax feels very autumnal lately, particularly the last couple of days. Days are quite warm, but it's clear that summer is drawing to a close, which makes me kind of sad. Most of my summer has been taken up with Israel, which was entirely marvellous... I don't think there was really anything I didn't like there, and I'm finding it kind of hard to be back here.
I went to Israel at the beginning of July and first spent a couple of days in Haifa with my friends Mirjam and Avraham... they are utterly lovely people who treat me like family and take very good care of me when I'm with them. I'd taken all kinds of pictures while I was there, including a LOT of Megiddo, but I'm afraid that I've deleted them permanently. DUH. I blame it on the new card reader that I bought when I went to Jerusalem... while I was trying to upload pics from the camera, I'm pretty sure that I deleted the Megiddo pics instead of saving them... unless, of course, I saved them somewhere ELSE and simply have not found them. I'll continue to be hopeful until I've exhausted all possibilities.
I had almost a week on my own in Jerusalem before classes began at the Conservative Yeshiva, and spent lots of time sightseeing and exploring. Hardly took a bus the whole time I was in Jerusalem (once, I think), and walked so much that I'm sure I must be 5 cm shorter now than I was when I arrived!
I davened Rosh Chodesh with Nashot HaKotel (Women of the Wall), at the Kotel in the Old City. That was such an interesting experience that it deserves a spot of its own here, which I will do later. And I marched in the Pride Parade on 29 July, which is also deserving of its own separate recounting. And I studied Hebrew (faaaaaaaar from fluent...), and Torah. I had some truly superior teachers and count myself blessed to have been able to spend this time there.
This time was different from other visits, because this time, I lived in an apartment, with one of the loveliest roomies ever. Sam is a lawyer from Syracuse, NY, and we didn't know each other at all before we got there. I hope we're going to be friends for a long, long time, because he's terrific. It was fun after classes were over, often wandering Jerusalem with him, and discovering things together. Did plenty of tourist stuff... the tunnel tour under the Western Wall, the Tower of David Light Show... Jerusalem International Film Festival... a concert by the Diwan Project... it was all just brilliant.
I didn't update the blog the whole time I was away, and probably should have ... now it will be a retrospective! But when I get it done, it will have photos as well...