Friday, May 05, 2006

Food tasting and an interesting Friday night service

My daughter had a "tasting" evening at the place where she's getting married along with many other engaged couples. I sat down to eat promptly - after all, it is a tasting evening - and daughter snapped at me - "You're supposed to be writing stuff down and checking out the designs of the tables."

"Sorry kid. I can't do nothing on an empty stomach." and continued filling up my plate with all the delicacies. I did my good mother bit and jotted down the selections of food which I thought were amazing - like the tabouli salad, the roast beef, the makhlouba, sweet potato and walnut salads, veal, - and I think nearly everything on display. I'm not a very good food picker - not when you like everything you see.

When we drove back, Hubby got on the phone with the designer he works with and farted into his seat several times. He had the phone on loudspeaker and we all burst out laughing because we thought Mr. Designer had probably heard Hubby's farts. Hubby is trying to keep his cool, but kept on farting into the seat, which made us laugh even harder.

He spoke to us as if he were speaking to a bunch of kindergarten kids "If you don't stop this, you'll have to get out of the car" - the loudspeaker still on.

My stomach hurt from giggling and stifling it - so I did get out of the car eventually, which made my daughters inside the car laugh even harder.

"I'm going to have to explain this to him" said my embarrassed Hubby.

"Yes you certainly will have to" we chimed in.

And tonight was m favorite interfaith Friday night monthly prayer service was and despite all the bitchings of my family complaining that I'm always running to this thing and that thing, I went anyways. I need my monthly spiritual injection desperately.

The place was packed to the brim - there was no room at all for anyone and they were spilling onto the garden area. I had never seen this so crowded. It is a good sign. Every time I go, the service is different. This time they had a cantor(ess) of Moroccan heritage who sounded like the Israeli singer, Rita leading the service beginning with the Song of Songs. She told us that the sound "Oh" (long o) is the most difficult of sounds. The sound "ah" is much easier, like the sound of relief - aaahhhhh. And she made us chant aaaaahhhs and oooohssss ending with mmmmmmmm. So we did our Hindu (or is it Buddhist) Oms as well in this service. But she did explain that God's voice is called "Kol" in Hebrew which is very difficult to pronounce (or to hear - don't remember exactly which) and which has that long "o" sound "ooohhhhhh" which we chanted again.

Halfway through the service the Green Sheikh and Sheikh Bukhari, the sufi sheikhs came walking in and we were once again led in a Sufi ziker. It was fun to watch all the Orthodox Jews there - some of whom looked like biblical settler types - chanting "Allah Noor" "Allah Noor" and "La Il'allah" 500 times in a circle, then we did a Moslem prayer for forgiveness. The Green Sheikh said a prayer in Arabic for peace and it was also amusing to see the nuns from the Mount of Beatitudes singing all the prayers in Hebrew. I guess that's why I love going there - because I love merging together. I think God is so pleased when he sees different types of people praying together in their own way and sharing their prayers with others instead of being so segregated, generally. By the end of the service I was hoarse from singing and chanting so long and so loud.

I managed afterwards to cop a ride home with my daughter's boyfriend. It's very difficult getting home Friday night when the buses don't run and taxis take advantage of that and charge 20% more for the ride.

I get home 11:30 pm and the table is not covered with our special Shabbat tablecloth. The kids explained when I'm not there, no one likes to eat together.

"But what about dad? Didn't he want to set the table and have a proper Sabbath meal?"

"Nah, you know he likes to eat straight from the pot. When you're not there we don't have a proper meal."

That will still not make me guilty enough to not have my monthly spiritual injection. Shows you how much moms get it all together and without them, the traditions/rituals just fall apart.


Anonymous said...

So host your monthly spiritual injection at your home, save cab fare, serve your family a loving meal - have it all.


jerusalemgypsy said...

That would be lovely but I'm not living in a "cool" neighborhood where people would be interested in such a funky service. Most of the people walk to this service - and just a few drive. I'm not in Jerusalem and I would get perhaps - 2 - people coming to the service.

And, besides, I don't have the knowledge that Rabbi Ruth Kagan has of leading such a service or her experience. But I am very happy to join her once a month - at the risk of my family not getting their shit together on Friday night by themselves.