Ever get the feeling that life is running you over? That's how this last month has been. Soooo many things have happened and nothing I can write in public about. Suffice it to say that David and I have been dealing with a lot of other peoples' issues; we have literally felt that our lives are not our own. This past week things have gotten a little better - not for the other people, but for us. Two of the situations deal with extended family and one pertains to a friend who we've been trying to support through a nasty divorce. The divorce is not final and for some strange, unexplainable reason (unknown to any sane person), no one is making this couple separate and the husband won't leave the house. There is a lot of emotional abuse going on and we fear for the wife's sanity as well as the mental health of the children. I finally had to tell her last week that David and I had to take a step back for our own sanity. We didn't see her or any of the kids this past week or over Shabbat; after seeing them (at least her and the baby) almost daily for months, we felt like we were having withdrawal! But I must admit, it was a more stress-free Shabbat.
It was, in fact, a most pleasant Shabbat. On Friday night it was just the four of us: Miryam and Shaya, David and I. I made chicken shish kebobs and baked potatoes, which was a nice change. For lunch, Penina and Pinchas and their teenagers joined the four of us. I had cut up lettuce, celery, red, yellow and green peppers, green onions, tomatoes and cilantro, plus made some Spanish rice, refried beans and spicy ground beef for an awesome Mexican lunch. We had tortilla chips and taco shells and everyone made what they wanted. After lunch, we took the leaves out of the dining room table and the six guys played cards while we four women played mahj - ALL afternoon. Miryam and Shaya stayed for Seudat Shlishli (the 3rd Shabbat meal) and for the last 45 minutes of Shabbat the four us sat outside and enjoyed the cool night air. It's been pretty darn hot the last couple of weeks. When I'm at work it's no big deal, but on days I don't work the house can get pretty hot. We have ceiling fans and floor fans in every room so it's bearable, and by 6:00 PM or so it starts to cool off considerably.
Last week's terrorist attack was pretty ghastly. I had taken a bus into town that morning and instead of getting off at my usual bus stop went all the way to the takanah merkazit. From there I switched to another bus which came straight down Jaffa street past the shuk, and then turned up King George (I had to drop off a check at our car insurance office). I had gotten on the 2nd bus at 10 a.m., and got to work around 11. At about 12:20, one of the Rabbis who works at our office came in to tell us there had just been a pigua (terrorist attack) on Jaffa Street by an Arab who was driving a construction tractor with a huge serrated crane. He drove the tractor down Jaffa running over cars and smashing vehicles with the crane. We listened to the news all afternoon. It was sickening. And then we heard that the murderer's father said, "My son was not a terrorist; he was a drug addict." Who cares?! He got ticked off and decided to see how many Jews he could mow down? That's a terrorist in my book! It's such an old story; Jews being the scapegoat. I know that our defense forces have stopped literally hundreds more of these terrorist attacks from happening, but every time it does happen, it's just too much. We're supposed to be living in civilized times, but what kind of animals have zero regard for human life? Even their own children are persuaded to give their lives as martyrs, and then they celebrate when their children die killing other people. There's just nothing sicker.
Let's go on to more pleasant subjects.
I'm still working out three days a week. Work is very enjoyable, although the computer situation hasn't changed. By the time I leave for the day I've been on every computer in the office. Only one computer has every program in working order. My computer doesn't have the database and isn't connected to the color printer. Another one has the database but doesn't have any Microsoft programs. I can only get my office email on another one. It's crazy! Hopefully we've made enough requests of the organizations's computer person that he'll do something about it this week.
We're trying to find a good dog sitter. Friends of ours in Ramat Beit Shemesh are making a bar mitzvah in a couple of weeks and they want us to come to the Thursday night siyum and dinner as well as to the Bar Mitzvah on Shabbat. Other friends invited us to stay with them, but they already have a dog and he's very territorial. Penina and Pinchas, who watched Emma before, are moving that same weekend to Nofei Aviv in Beit Shemesh. Shayna and Yonaton, who also watched Emma one Shabbat, are going to be in the states. We may just have to go Thursday night and come home.
It's almost midnight and tomorrow starts the work week. Have a good one!