Friday, October 5, 2012

Week in Seven Words #139

They're identical twins in platform shoes and airy skirts, wearing jewelry with mystical designs. If I had to guess their age I'd say they're in their 50s, but they carry themselves like much younger women, brushing back the hair from their face and perching bird-like on their seats during the Kol Nidre service on the eve of Yom Kippur. I don't even know them but I have a feeling they're pretty awesome.

On Saturday afternoon a little girl, maybe three or four, shows up to synagogue wearing shoes with built-in squeakers. Every time she takes a step they let out a loud high chirpy noise. Two questions cross my mind as I try to concentrate on praying: 1) Why would you have your child wear shoes like that to synagogue? 2) Why would you buy shoes like that to begin with? Children are already experts at making noise; they don't need your help.

The first married couple: man and woman stand apart and discuss the pains in their legs and whether there will be rain later in the evening. The second married couple: man and woman sit on a bench, hold hands and say nothing.

The orange-yellow mums in the flower pot by the window look like a multi-faceted sea creature, small insects swimming in and out of it.

Towards the end of the fast on Yom Kippur I'm mellow. During the short afternoon break between synagogue services I sit in a nearby park, where my mind throws open its doors and says, "Welcome world," to the trees, the passing cars and pedestrians.

He speaks eloquently, but his story would have been more powerful had he not ended it with a request for money.

teshuva (תשובה‎)
The Hebrew word for 'repentance' is teshuva, which means 'return.' You've gone off course and now it's time to come back. Teshuva is important all year round but is especially emphasized in the 10 days spanning from Rosh Hashanah to Yom Kippur. On Sunday we go out to lunch, mindful of what happened last month. But unlike last month there are no fights this time, no recriminations that ruin our plans.


naida said...

I hope you had a nice holiday HKatz. I have to agree with distracting. Great week in words!

fiction-books said...

Hi HKatz,

I just love the way that you depict 'matrimony'. It would be Oh! so funny, if it weren't so stubbornly true. Both couples could be a carbon copy of life in our house, most days.

That and the mental image you have created about the two 'throwbacks', from another era in 'distinct'

I am trying to find one word that will sum up my week so far and 'stressful' is about the best I can manage LOL!

Nice post, thanks for sharing,


Cottage Garden said...

Interesting week here HKatz and an important one for you I know. I like the Hebrew 'letters'(?) spelling out teshuva. I hope you had an enjoyable lunch with your family.

In the Heat of the Night is an incredible film. I last watched it on TV on a cold, rainy Saturday afternoon!


Elizabeth Carrington said...

Beautiful receptive. isn't amazing how fasting can effect our minds, clear the food fog: )

HKatz said...

@ Thanks, Naida!

@ Yvonne - I hope your coming week is less stressful :)

@ Jeanne - In the Heat of the Night was indeed a great find.

@ Elizabeth - I love that expression, "food fog"

Thank you all for stopping by and sharing your thoughts.

patteran said...


As far as kids are concerned in my experience, they'll use all the help they can get to increase their personal noise ratio. Shoes that squeak deliberately are the invention of a parent who values income over aural comfort!

Nancy Cudis said...

"distracting" is sort of deja vu. I remember thinking along those lines myself when squeakers were very much in trend. I think some mothers eventually found them too distracting to the point of being annoying, so they replaced them with lights such that each time a kid steps with his shoes, little lights go on. Still "distracting". :)

HKatz said...

@ Dick: It really seems more like the kind of shoe a kid would invent :)

@ Nancy: At least lights you can turn your back on... the squeaks follow you everywhere...

Relyn Lawson said...

The shoes would have made me nuts. The most irritating thing I can think of from recent church services is the lady who clipped her fingernails. ICK!