I opened my eyes. Who the heck is that? Without my lenses, I cannot see a thing. Where am I? Why do I feel like I have been run over by a bus? Who is that woman, and how does she know my name?
The curtain opened. Along with the already brilliant light of the morning sun flooding in, my memory jolted back into reality.
“WOOOHOOO! I’m in Israel!”
I bolted out of bed, realising that I was the madricha, and would be responsible for getting everyone out of bed, eat breakfast, and be in a lecture by 8:15am!
( for those of you that know me…. The irony is rife. I am notorious for never being able to get the kids out of the house on time for school )
Oh, and by the way, I realised who the strange woman in my room was, no stranger at all, it was Ariella! And the two of us even had a few giggles, first thing in the morning. So out of character for me to be laughing first thing in the morning, especially on so little sleep.
We packed up and headed to the elevator. Thrilled and shocked to see everyone was already packed and out their rooms, suitcases in tow. Phew! I was let off the hook. This is the difference when traveling with MOMMIES as opposed to 20 something’s!
A quick breakfast followed by a riveting lecture by Ken Spiro, a world reknowned historian and speaker.
Back on the bus we headed to the Jordan river. We suited up with life jackets and headed to our rubber duckies. After the initial shock of feeling the pleasantly cold water immerse the bottom half of our bodies, we relaxed , soaked up some sun, and got to know one another a little more, as our kayaks cruised leisurely down the historical Jordan river.
And then it was off to Tsfat. We went on a small tour to 2 shuts, a Sepahrdi shul, and the shul of the Ari Hakadosh. Many of the women sat in Eliyahu’s chair. It is said, that if one sits in that chair, it is a segula for having a child. Many people, in fact one of the staff members here, had put it to the test, and only remembered 3 months after his baby was born, that he had sat in that chair 1 year before.
I also sat in that chair in July or August 2010. I did get pregnant in March 2012. I also miscarried,so not sure what that meant, will have to ask someone about that tomorrow!
We shopped, and then regrouped for dinner over looking the magnificent hills that surround Tsfat.
Our discussions at dinner are getting deeper, the more we get to know one another. It is hard to believe that we have only spent 36 hrs together.
Back onto the bus, for an arduous 3 hr journey to Yerushalyim. But, to all of our surprise,the journey turned into one of connecting with each other, of a tremendous flow of emotion, and a sense of sisterhood, as each woman got up, introduced herself and told us what this trip, and this journey ultimately meant to them.
We found familiarity in each other, recognizing the yearning for a greater life of purpose, and for all of us, the immense love we felt for Eretz Yisrael, was palpable.
Tears are supposed to open the gates of Mercy. Well, tonight, as we climbed our way to entrance of the city of Jerusalem, I am sure our tears entered the entrance of heaven. Each tear containing the heartfelt prayer of each one of us, each unique ands different. I am sure our prayers resounded in the heavens above.
We all felt it. The holy fire of Jerusalem.
of the city of Jeruslaem