Posted By rachael
Date: February 2nd, 2009
Category: Rachael's blog
Lots of great things happened in January: We moved into our beautiful house. Larry’s parents were here and his sister and her twins arrived. We had visits with the Kirby family from Boston and several long-lost cousins. Ayla celebrated her 4th birthday with three birthday parties. And Ayla and I saw our favorite Israeli children’s performer, Saba Tuvia, live in concert.
We did have one big mishap, however, that makes for our best January story: Our trip to Jerusalem for a family bar mitzvah.
We had decided to drive caravan-style to Jerusalem. Larry and his parents were in the first car and the kids and I were behind them. I didn’t have the map or the directions but we had our cell phones and we figured we’d keep in touch. A big white van wedged between us in Tel Aviv just as we were changing highways for Jerusalem. When the van changed lanes, Larry was nowhere to be found. And I discovered my cell-phone service had cut out. I assumed this meant that Larry had lost service too. It was getting dark.
I had no map, no phone, no directions, no address for our rental apartment, not even the name of the bar mitzvah family who we were visiting. I had never driven to Jerusalem before. It was dark outside. And we were barreling down the highway during a war. We were passing signs for Ashdod and Ashkelon in the south, where people had been evacuated because of the war in Gaza. Uh-oh. I suspected Larry and his parents were in a panic too.
Ayla and I decided we would just keep following signs for Jerusalem. When we reached the city we followed signs towards the center of town, since the bar mitzvah was going to be at the Western Wall. We looked for the biggest international hotel we could find and asked the concierge to phone our friend Hank Shrier, who had arranged our rental apartment. Fortunately Hank’s phone number was in my wallet.
We had blindly found our way to a hotel called the King David. The amazing thing is that the King David was only two blocks away from our rental apartment. And Larry and his parents had just phoned Hank themselves. Larry’s phone was OK but they had gotten lost too. Hank directed them back to the safety of the King David and we had a very happy family reunion. We all celebrated by taking Hank to dinner at the Inbar Hotel.
The big lesson here is that we should have put all the vital info in my car too.
Larry’s parents were then up all night with either food poisoning or the stomach flu. They were confined to bed for several days. My father-in-law never left the apartment for our entire stay in Jerusalem. The bar mitzvah, which the rest of us attended, was lovely!
The weather is slightly warmer now. We are so thrilled that Debbie and her twins Becca and Lev are here. Ayla and Becca are playing together all the time.
Here are some photos from our January adventures. Love to all — Rachael