Chag Sameach everybody!
We are so lucky to have our own homeland, so lucky. Rav Soloveichik was profound when he wrote that the establishment of the state of Israel was the process of six miraculous occasions done together by Hashem (For more detail on this look up his essay “Kol Dodi Dofek” – “My beloved is calling”). It is mamish a miracle from Hashem, with the Jewish people’s partnership, that the state of Israel came into existence in 1948 and each day is miraculous that we have the opportunity to live here and defend ourselves. Sometimes Jews in Israel and overseas don’t realize how much the existence of the state of Israel has influenced how easy life has become for Jews all over the world. The soldiers of the Israeli army are today’s heroes for all of Am Yisrael, not just for the Jews living in Israel.
Yom Haatzmaut Update
We just spent our first Yom Haatzmaut here in Israel as an Israeli family and it was great!
Last night we saw three different fireworks shows that took place in the Gush Etzion region. First we saw the Elazar fireworks show, then we saw the Alon Shvut fireworks show and finally, last but not least, we saw the Efrat fireworks show (all seen from standing in one place in Efrat). We attended the celebration here in Efrat and it was so nice to be celebrating the chag while being here in Israel.
This years celebration has really been internalized by by and large all the citizens of the country, since Zionism is now IN because the Arabs have reminded us that they don’t want us here. Everywhere you look you see Israeli flags waving in the wind; from cars, houses, apartments, lampposts etc. My brother, Dani, was in Tel Aviv last night and he said that he was pleasantly surprised to see Tel Aviv filled with flying Israeli flags as well (an unusual occurrence in the past). It is such a sad state of affairs that we need others to remind us of what’s important to us, but so it is.
We were able to finish all of our bureaucratic, Government office errands before and right after Pesach. B”H, it all went well without much hassle. Our lift came in after Pesach and we were one of the lucky one of eight families to have been chosen by the Israeli tax authority for our lift to have been opened up by them. They were sweet enough to open up half of our boxes and make sure that we were honest in declaring the goods that we brought into the country! After their thorough search, the lift was delivered to our rented apartment in Efrat. We have since been busy unpacking our boxes and arranging everything in our new true bayit neeman B’yisrael! It has been very exciting trying to figure out how to arrange all of our furniture into our new apartment. Little by little everything is coming together.
Unfortunately, we still have not moved into our apartment. We would have moved into our apartment right after Pesach, but we only got electricity in the apartment this past Sunday! B”H we have family here that we have been able to stay with. Our latest challenge is getting our appliances hooked up. Now that we finally have electrolyte we have found out that the company that we have a service contract with won’t come out to Efrat to install everything! But, we hope to be in our apartment by the end of the week.
We heard about the amazing rally in Washington. It really didn’t get much press here in Israel because it was Yom Hazikaron, but hopefully the American administration got the message. We have heard that the press in America has been good. Is that true? In any case, it is so good to hear that American Jewry, as a community, is finally waking up and smelling the coffee! Kol Hakavod to all of you for doing your part for Am Yisrael and Eretz Yisrael.
May we all be together in Israel soon.
Avi, Rachel and Yakir