Mami arrived safe and sound. I hope she's having a good time. I've been working and getting ready for the bat mitzvah so touring hasn't been a priority. Next week we'll hopefully do more.
We did make it to the Kotel last night. I think I've mentioned that we get to the Kotel relatively often (wow, am I here long enough to say "several times a year"???)When we arrived, I was thrilled to see there was going to be a swearing-in ceremony for soldiers recently drafted. Not just any soldiers, but tzanchanim--paratroopers, one of the army's most elite unites. There were tons of adorable soldiers (and I say that only in the most motherly of ways) hanging around waiting for the ceremony to begin. Everything was set up, including their machine guns and tanachim (the complete bible, on which they will swear their allegiance to serve the people and State of Israel).
Usually, when we go to the Kotel, I spend a considerable amount of time at the wall itself. I often pray with my siddur (prayerbook) or just pray with my heart. Sometimes I just stand or sit there watching the other women praying and crying; I wonder about the pain in their hearts. I always end my visit by squeezing my way through to the wall where I leave a note, or just caress the ancients stones for a moment or two.
Last night I did none of that. I just stood and watched the soldiers getting ready. I didn't go down to the wall, I didn't even think about praying. I was just enthralled by the preparations; we didn't even have enough time to stay for the actual ceremony.
When my mom and kids came back up from the Kotel, it was time to go. They wondered if I was going down to the wall. "Nah", I said. "Next time". I totally didn't care.
What do you think that means?
Here's a little treat for you: one of those adorable soldiers
The Stuff That Lasts, Part Deux
6 years ago