First Shabbat in Jerusalem  

Posted by inkstainedhands in

As I lit the Shabbat candles on Friday night and recited the bracha, I thought to myself, "Wow, my first Shabbat in Jerusalem." And when my mother finished lighting the candles, she turned to me and exclaimed with a smile, "The first Shabbat in Jerusalem!"

We stayed at home on Friday night, eating what my parents had found in a nearby makolet and what my mother had prepared. Interestingly enough, the melon tasted like pears, while the pastries tasted like sufganiot. I'll have to go back to the market for some more of those pastries. :] (The calories are nothing when you consider how much I walk around and how little I eat otherwise during the week.)

Shacharit starts, and therefore ends, earlier in Israel, so my father returned by 10 AM on Shabbat morning. We had been invited by my parents' friends for lunch, so we set off at around 10:45 AM.

What amazed me as we walked up the stairs to their apartment were the walls. There was graffiti all over them, but not graffiti in the traditional sense -- not the kind you would see scribbled on all the flat surfaces in New York. There were blue Israeli flags hastily drawn a few times for every level of stairs, along with the words ציוני גאה -- Proud Zionist. It made me smile.

Another one of the things I noticed is the superiority of the wine here. It is not as watered down as the wines we have back in New York. On the contrary, it is thicker and made up of more grapes than water. One of the wines we had at our host's house was, he explained, personally made by someone he knows. Homemade wine -- I think that is a first for me!

One of the things I loved about Shabbat in Jerusalem was how peaceful it was around the building and the courtyard of our Maalot Dafna apartment. I walked around the winding passages of the place (I am hesitant in calling it a building, just because it is not at all what I think of when I imagine a building) and then I sat at the bottom of one of the staircases and read for a few hours.

Most of the people I saw were IDF soldiers, who were constantly passing by, walking back and forth, and chatting amongst themselves in Hebrew. More on them later. :] In a separate post!

I also want to write about Thursday and Friday, so I will hopefully be making two more posts over the course of the weekend, if not more.

(Although by the time you Americans make havdala, I might already have a second post up. I just need to upload some photos in order to enhance my posts with some visual effects.)

Shavua tov!

This entry was posted on Saturday, August 8, 2009 at Saturday, August 08, 2009 and is filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .


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