Friday, July 14, 2006

The Jews Mourn and the Arabs Celebrate

We fasted yesterday (the 17th of Tammuz) in mourning of the beginning of the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem thousands of years ago. I had a big headache yesterday - but instead of breaking my fast early (which is allowed on this fast day versus the more serious ones of the ninth of Av and Yom Kippur) I kept to it. Rockets falling all over the place (last night in Haifa!!for the first time ever) is a good reminder that we need to do teshuva (repent for our sins) and our safety is, in the long run, dependent on G-d.

Last evening we heard a lot of booms outside. At first I thought it must be an Arab wedding (they like to set off fireworks and sometimes shoot into the air - I guess dancing for the bride and groom doesn't do it for them) but then, when I went for a short walk - I saw that they were going off in three different places. Three different weddings in the three little villages near me? No way - it must be because they are celebrating.

Then again - there were also a lot of army flares going up, so our guys were out reminding them not to get too excited and join the "party" themselves.

My friend's husband was sent home from the north and told that if they need him again they will call him. I invited the family for shabbat - but now they would prefer to be home. The invitation of course still stands if her husband is called up again. This is the way we deal with the situation - cooking! At this point there is nothing more to be done.

There are other blogs with up-to-the-minute updates about what is happening. I could theoretically do the same - but I don't want to. Six years ago when the violence started everyone was glued to the tv/radio/computer. The adrenaline junkies were high all of the time! When it turned out that it was going to be a long term situation, those of us who are not adrenaline junkies quickly learned how much news we could take, and what we needed to do to keep our emotional balance. For me it means listening to the news most of the day, but turning it off around 6:00pm. I then read books and take care of small things in the house. It is also important for women with children in the house not to broadcast too much panic/excitement. The kids need to feel secure, and to know that if there is a danger then we will listen to what the army tells us to do and things will be ok.

Most people are saying that this present situation will probably last at least a few weeks, so my routine seems appropriate. I will try to blog every day - and probably more than once a day - but expect mellow stuff! If you want really up-to-the-minute, then Israelmatzav, Hashmonean, and David Bender are good sources.

23 Comments:

Blogger tafka PP said...

WBM- do you know, there has never been any shooting at any of the Arab weddings I've attended- quite disappointing! Also as I recall they have a very energetic version of "simcha dancing" - with not a drop of alcohol to lift the spirits, noch.

But seriously, while I can well believe that many Palestinians were yesterday celebrating what they hope is the beginning of the downfall of their oppressors, I want to tell you that nobody was jumping for joy in my office- far from it: People expressed just as much concern and fear for the region as I have heard from Jews.

Shabbat Shalom VeShaket to us all.

12:38 PM, July 14, 2006  
Anonymous Jeremayakvoka said...

WBM, Cliches such as "home front," "home is where the heart is," or "fabric of society" fall to the wayside reading your wonderfully practical and caring posts.

Shabbat Shalom to you, your children, your neighbors, to tafka, and everyone else you're in touch with.

nobody was jumping for joy in my office- far from it...
Curious, tafka: Where do you blog from?

1:41 PM, July 14, 2006  
Blogger tafka PP said...

Jeremayakova- East Jerusalem, mostly.

Shabbat Shalom to you too.

2:56 PM, July 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

West Bank PAPA here -

We occassionally hear rounds of semi-automatic fire from nearby villages, accompanied by the sounds of music. As there are no subsequent reports of "incidents" it is clear some of these are gunfire into the air at weddings.

However, what I heard last night was different. Some of the loud booming noises were from flares illuminating the hillsides around here. My guess is that this was part of an effort to prevent the launching of Kassams, now that the PA has boasted of having missiles in Samaria.

3:59 PM, July 14, 2006  
Blogger Rafi G said...

I am with you on not blogging real time.. way too much info that just frustrates and aggravates needlessly..

shabbat shalom..

4:59 PM, July 14, 2006  
Blogger Regina Clare Jane said...

wbm... I just wanted to check in and send you and your family all my prayers. I hope and pray that everyone keeps safe over there during this time... Shabbat Shalom as well.

5:06 PM, July 14, 2006  
Blogger Nick said...

I loved your blog it was very peaceful to read it. You can almost sense by your words that you feel the war around you but you are walking in peace.

I am celebrating the war myself, Israel cannot go on like she has been. I am not a racist but I cannot help but dislike our common enemy. I wish they could change their hearts but they cannot. Only bullets and bombs can change them, how sad.

As you batten down the hatches I wish and pray peace to you and yours, and all the Jews of Israel.

8:50 PM, July 14, 2006  
Blogger Gail said...

My thoughts and prayers are with you all. Take care.

10:05 PM, July 14, 2006  
Blogger jenifer said...

I just stumbled upon your blog and have really enjoyed hearing of life in your part of the world. I, too, pray for the peace of Jerusalem, as well as the safety of those you love.

12:56 AM, July 15, 2006  
Anonymous saus said...

What great comments, Am Israel Chai.

Many thanks for the link WBM, shabbat shalom!

2:31 AM, July 15, 2006  
Blogger westbankmama said...

tafka - well, I guess that is good news - sort of

jeremayakovka - thank you again for your nice comments

rafi - yes, as a matter of fact a psychologist came to our yishuv a few weeks after the "intifada" started and actually advised us to do what I instinctively decided anyway - check in when my curiosity gets the better of me, but don't obssess. Pray, spend time with the kids, and burn off nervous energy creatively (some women would clean the house - but things have to be REALLY bad if I do any unnecessary cleaning!!!)

regina - thank you for your good thoughts - how is your mom and dad?

nick - yes, I am trying to "walk in peace" as you say - hope you continue reading my blog

gail - thank you very much

jennifer - welcome to my blog and thank you very much for your good thoughts

saus - your welcome

9:31 PM, July 15, 2006  
Blogger lisoosh said...

Found out completely by accident - it was also something called "tawjihi day" the day when students find out their scores. They celebrate by handing out chocolates and lighting fireworks.

1:52 AM, July 16, 2006  
Blogger westbankmama said...

lishoosh - what do they do if they don't like their scores?

9:23 AM, July 16, 2006  
Blogger Milhouse said...

Linked at Neo Warmonger

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