Sunday, October 7, 2012

Cliche Holi-daze

A helpful website when living in Israel:

Today is the last day of Sukkot, a Jewish holiday that lasts 7 days (8 days in the diaspora, thanks Wikipedia) shortly following Yom Kippur. In Sukkot, a structure called a "sukkah" is built to imitate the itinerant structures the Jews had to build during the Exodus. The tradition goes that people are supposed to eat and sleep in these huts for the week but today, mostly two big meals are served, for the first and last day of the holiday. But to have a giant tent in your yard is fun too, the other day a friend texted me if I wanted to go to Karaoke. In my translation of the hebrew I thought he said it was a club called Rami, but it was actually to be in the sukkah of his friend Rami. I think Moses would have approved.

I have never had so much holiday overload. Already a normal week in Israel culminates in shabbat. From Friday evening to Saturday evening the entire city shuts down. Shops, restaurants, public transportation, it all closes and remains closed until a nondescript and ever changing "official time" says when things can re-open. It's a slightly eerie reality to watch a bustling, lively, colorful street go absolutely quiet. Everyone retires into their houses and its like you can see a tumbleweed blow down the road.

On holidays, it follows the same formula and in the month of September and October, it's like every other day is a holiday, and then it's shabbat. We had Rosh Hashanna, and then shabbat. We had all the days leading up to Yom Kippur, plus shabbat. Then it was Yom Kippur! Total and complete shut down. Then it was shabbat. Sukkot arrived! Then shabbat. Then Sukkot kept going, then shabbat. Now it is the final last days of Sukkot, then we'll have shabbat, then we will get one, full, uninterrupted work week. I don't know how I'll be able to live five full days in a row, at least I'll have shabbat.

The outside of an impressive Sukkah

Sukkah filled, popping bubbly!

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