Thursday, July 21, 2016

A Scene of Israel

I love taking pictures. Last night when I got out of work...I was speaking on the phone so I couldn't take a picture of what was happening before my eyes. One part of my brain kept the conversation going, wishing I could somehow disconnect with my client and enjoy the scene.

There must be a picture somewhere, but I haven't find it.

Here's a picture of the scene without the scene. This is the location. Look and then try to imagine.

Take away the train, it only came later...take away the sunshine. It was about 9:00 p.m. - completely night, a summer night in a beautiful city.

There, this second one is better. Dark streets...not so empty...and music. That was the first thing I noticed - music.

And people in a group walking in the center of the road, on the tracks...all around me, people were coming out of buildings and gathering near the edge of the tracks. People were clapping, singing, taking pictures and videos.

And there in the middle, about 200 strong, walked along the light rail tracks, straight up the center of Jerusalem. Then, I saw a chuppah, a wedding canopy, being marched down the center of the tracks.

I was wondering if maybe there would be a bride and groom but I couldn't see anyone under the chuppah as four men carried the poles and others danced in and out from underneath. At one point, the train came through and a policeman rushed to order everyone out of the way but still they kept singing and dancing.

It was an event that happens regularly all over the country, each time to great joy. Not a wedding, but the dedication of a new Torah scroll. Often written to honor or remember a loved one, the writing of a Torah scroll is a dream for many of us. It's very expensive, takes tremendous skill and dedication and time and so it is only logical that when it is done, it is brought to the synagogue with song and dance and celebration.

I've seen it many time; but this was the first time I saw it right there in the middle of the city, watched over by dozens, guarded by police and security.

It was, quite simply, a symbol of our life, a scene that is so very Israel. 

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