Saturday, 1 February 2014

Shabbat is coming!

Shabbat is in the air!

It's Friday, it's 4pm and I need to rush to my friends' flat if I want to make it in time to cook for Shabbat.

I get out of my shoebox (I finally moved in) which is near the Old City, and start my 30-minute-long walk. The streets are packed, everyone is in their best attire, walking towards the Old Jerusalem to pray at the Western Wall. Orthodox, young and old, men wear their best looking hat over their yarmulkas, their leather shoes are as shiny as ever. More moderate people are still wearing their best clothes. I'm not though, I was rushing and now I feel a little out of place, going to schul in sneakers is not the best idea I've ever had. But they're the most comfortable shoes to walk in, shouldn't that count on Shabbat? Everyone looks serene, happy.

The roads are packed too, everyone is commuting to where they need to be before Shabbat starts (Approximately 4.30pm). I'm out of the centre, walking by the parks. For once, their full of people. The Arabs take the opportunity to gather in the parks while they're "free". Children are playing on the grass, adults are chatting, laughing, preparing their Friday night barbecue. They too seem happy.





You can feel the Shabbat in the air. Everyone relaxes.

Tonight I'm going to the Mizrahim Orthodox schul down the street with my hosts, I've never been to one. An interesting experience.

The next morning, in the same parks, the Falachas (The black Jews from Ethiopia) will celebrate weddings, all dressed in white and light colours. Many people will take the day to go out as a family, taking long walks in the sun. It feels like a national holiday, well it kind of is, but it happens every week.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend for those in the Diaspora, and Shavuah tov for those who are here!

(I apologise for disappearing but I don't have internet at my new place, which is quite horrible)

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