A nation immersed in the dialogue of when it will attack Iran’s Nuclear Build Up (note: not if it will attack?); changing political leadership; preparations for the Pesakh holiday (celebrating the Jews’ escape from Egyptian slavery); the national excitement for the Israeli version of the The Voice’s finals and the Maccabi Tel Aviv Basketball Team’s final rounds of the European League Championship – all contributing to the dynamic, daily fabric of this close knit nation. We have made a special spring trip to Israel to visit my ailing mother-in-law. Long drives on the highway to her kibbutz in the South where two weeks early Katushas landed – angry gifts from the neighboring Islamic Jihadists in Gaza. The spring landscape is lush and green enhanced by dramatic wild flowers, the result of healthy storms that pounded the country this winter. I admire my children who respect and admire their Safta. They are patience with her complex slumbering schedule and her breathing scares that cause her to rushed to the hospital; and they are tender and thoughtful by her side and speak lovingly in their hidden Hebrew language. They honor the Safta who over their lifetimes has prepared endless meals, bought countless chocolate eggs and always shared her fortunes with them. These shared moments serve as profound reminders that no matter how crazy my Mutant Ninja Children can make me, I have raised fine human beings who are kind, thoughtful, empathetic and generous of spirit.
Days are long and fulfilling in Israel: a reunion with a husband/father who had been away far too long; morning walks along the sandy beach; surf camp at the Gazebo Beach Club; visits with dear old friends; a cousin’s birthday on a beautiful mo-shav at the end of long country vineyard lined roads; a restorative day trip with my girlfriends to Jerusalem; eating delicious Mediterranean cuisine; reading piles of old magazines and books unattended for far too long; and watching movies, because no vacation is complete without the cinema, both at home and in the theater (Hunger Games with Hebrew subtitles). Waking up each morning to the enchanting Mediterranean Sea out my window; watching the aquatic colors and textures change throughout the days and nights – a wonderful indulgence.
Flying across the world is a welcomed opportunity to separate from the chaotic pace of a rich daily life. While I bask in this separation, my MN Teens remain well connected and quite content with FaceBook and iChat.
I fear that I will return to Los Angeles more physically tired than when I arrived, but I know that I will be more emotionally charged than when I departed.