We are leaving in about an hour and a half for the airport. I am very sad, not at all ready to leave.
We had a lovely final Shabbat — Friday night services at Kol haNeshama (where I again ran into visiting rabbis from the US whom I know), dinner (and Tu B’shevat seder) with Rabbi Arik Asherman of Rabbis for Human Rights and his lovely family. Arik’s in-laws and Chaim sang the whole night long, trading songs. This morning we returned to Shira Chadasha (the feminist Orthodox community) for a final hit of their incredible singing. I have their CD so that I can learn some new melodies to remind myself of Jerusalem.
This afternoon, Chaim and I walked to Bili and Mats’ to say our final good-byes. On the way, we stopped at the Eliezer Ben-Yehuda house, just a block or so away from them. Eliezer Ben Yehuda is the man who revived Hebrew. As I understand it, he was quite fanatical about it, not letting his son Ben-Zion speak any other language than the one his father was creating and teaching him. Ben-Zion (Ben-Zion Ben-Yehuda was his name!) was therefore the first native Hebrew speaker.
Historical sites around the city have these blue signs
Around the corner from Mats and Bili’s on the other side is Agnon’s house. Shai (Sh. I.) Agnon, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, did not get along with his neighbor Yosef Klausner, who happened to be Amos Oz’s uncle. (Amos Oz is another famous Israeli writer.) Though Oz and Agnon did meet once, apparently it could not be a closer relationship because of the enmity between Agnon and Klausner. The bigger irony is that Agnon lived on a street named for Oz’s uncle, Yosef Klausner Street.
Me in front of Agnon’s house, and pomegranates on Agnon’s front tree!
Note, too, that Agnon’s house is Bauhaus style, one of the rare Jerusalem buildings that is not made from Jerusalem stone.
Bili, Mats, Hunter
When Chaim and I got home from our walk and visit with Bili, Mats, and Hunter (their dog), I realized that I had left my phone there! Though she’s not a therapist, Bili’s brilliant analysis when I called her from Chaim’s phone was, “You really didn’t want to say goodbye, did you?”
We were fortunate to have Bili with us for Havdalah (aptly meaning “separation”) when she dropped off the phone.
And here I am, blogging away, as a way to stay my anxiety before the flight. I plan to send one more post when I return to the States after processing it all, so stay tuned!
The blogger at work
16 Shevat/January 26, 2013