Friday, August 30, 2013

A Jewish soul still yearns, and onward, towards the ends of the east...

A SodaStream commercial airs as I type this in my office.   I have spent zero time in here for the last month, and now, in the last week, it has become the drop zone for anything and everything travel-related.

That is because week ago, I was enjoy warmth kissed by the breeze of the Mediterranean Sea; this week I have been stifled by the sweaty arm of a late Minnesota summer heat wave.  This time last week the discussion was still on Yemen; now gas masks have entered the security lexicon (again).

But this does not change something that was made very clear last week and in the three weeks prior: I love Israel.  A lot.

Yes, there were early moments when I wondered "What am I doing here?"  Many, many destinations were originally avoided to avoid using my bad Hebrew.   But the longer I spent in the Middle Eastern sun, these simple thoughts melted away, unprecedented feelings trickled into my heart and soul, and I was at home in Israel. I felt so at home in the end that coming back to Minnesota felt like the vacation because I knew I would be back; my soul wouldn't have it any other way.

And now, my soul only wants to do one thing: to write.  To write the reviews of the restaurants.  To write the stories of the people met and observed and the interactions with them.  To write the research inspired by existence in an area that all know, few seen, even fewer absorbed.

But most importantly, to write about hope--of return, of peace, of progress--because even as the snowflakes and temperature (undoubtedly) fall and my (shockingly dark for me) tan begins to fade, my gaze will be fixated towards the east, where a soul can be free like the bubbles in an at-home carbonation station (which also finds its home in the land of Zion and Jerusalem).
"Hatikvah" - Israeli National Anthem

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