As many of you probably know, I love running. Before we left for Israel, I was in the habit of running 4 – 5 times per week. This is something I’d like to continue in Israel. In fact, I’m hoping to join a running club or at least meet a group of people that I can run with on a consistent basis. However, as you can imagine, our lives have been turned upside down a little over the last few weeks and I haven’t been able to run as much as usual. This is one reason why I was so happy last Saturday night. I finally got to do my first run since moving in to Jerusalem! Not only was it good for me physically to be moving around like that, but it also really helped me relax and feel more at home.
There was another reason why this run was so meaningful to me. About two minutes after I leaving our apartment, just after I reached this old rail-line that was converted into a walking/running/biking path, it started to drizzle. All of a sudden everyone around me (there were a lot of people on the trail) was smiling and laughing. The kids were jumping up and down. It was just so amazing to feel and share in the pure joy that a few drops of rain could produce. It wasn’t just the joy, but the fact that there was a moment when everyone, from all different backgrounds had this common understanding and connection and appreciation for the blessing of rain that G-d bestowed upon us. All it took was a handful of perfectly clear, hot, dry days for us to already start to feel part of this shared understanding. (I can only imagine how much stronger this feeling will grow when we spend an entire summer in Israel). And so, during that run, for the first time I felt less like an outsider, with different social and cultural sensibilities and more at one with the surrounding population.
Until next time,