Sunday, October 23, 2005

for your edification

I just posted the newest chapter of A Symphony of Sweets on my Fiction Blog. I know techinically I'm late but I'm bending the rules just because of the holidays. this month is filled with Jewish Holidays that just slam into you one right after the other. First Rosh Hashana, the new year, two days long. Ten days later Yom Kippur, the day of repentance, one day long. Five days after that, Sukkot, a harvest holiday, eight days long (though only seven in Israel - I'm not going to get into the detials of jewish law here, just trust me on that). The final two days of Sukkot (In Israel just the last day) are holidays within a the holiday. Shmeeni Atzeret (to be honest I'm not quite sure what the deal is, with this one, I think it has to do with rain and such) and Simchat Torah.

Simchat Torah is actually a pretty fun holiday. A chapter of the Torah (five books of moses) is read every week during saturday morning services. Simchat Torah is the day of celebration when we finish the last chapter of the Torah, then start all over again for the new year. It's as big deal. Big party. In your sunday best (for jews I suppose it's our saturday best) you go to synogogue, hear the first and last chapter of the torah, then everyone dances and sings and gets drunk. As the way the jewish calendar works each day actualy starts at sunset so the holiday starts in the evening. As such the biggest party is in the evening. Some streets in Manahattan actually close to traffic so the Jews can empty from the synogogues dancing with the torahs and each other and singing mostly jewish folk songs and such. The drinking is done before, after and during.

So I'm not complaining that there are so many holidays, just that they come with such quick succession It's hard to get any work done. That's why the posting of the newest chapter is a bit delayed this week.

For those wondering Simchat torah starts this Tuesday night, so if you're bored this tuesday, regardless whether you are Jewish or not, you might want to check out what the local synogogue is doing. Services are always free as are drinks (though said drinks are usually schnapps of some sort and or Manashevitz wine). That's what I'll be doing anyway.

Happy holidays.


Nonny said...

I would love to go and observe a service or celebration. unfortunately, I don't have a synagogue in my city. Now, I'm sure there is one in Akron, but I have no idea where it is and I don't like driving in downtown Akron unless I know where I'm going as they have a lot of one way streets, which make turning around very difficult. And if you get lost, well you might as well go to your nearest police station because your not getting out on you own.

Fridaysweb said...

Nonny, go to Columbus. There is a church, synagogue, temple, mosque (sp?) name it, on about every other street. Columbus is definately multi-cultural!

Amichai, I hope your holidays are going well. I miss you!