Hey OOTOB readers,
A little while ago, Chana Deutsch from Israel contacted me. She runs a program to help Jewish women in their relationships, and asked if she could interview me. Fun, because I’ve done a number of interviews here, and now I get to be the interviewee. It’s an audio interview, and it’s going to air on January 30th right here.
Exactly two years ago, at the close of 2014, I wrote a post about that year. It was a gut-wrenching year full of bad news and sad moods. Since that time, I find myself getting especially reflective this time of year, looking back on the year and deciding what I want to say about it.
In my neighborhood, there used to be four large Orthodox congregations: Heights Jewish Center, Young Israel, Green Rd. Synagogue, and Chabad. There was also an ad hoc congregation that had begun in a home, called “Zichron Chaim.” It was commonly referred to as “the shteeble,” which is a Yiddish word for “little house” and refers to a small, organic, grass roots congregation, loosely formed and typically without a rabbi, that meets in a home and then sometimes, if it grows, migrates to a more spacious space.
I’ve been doing more traveling, speaking, teaching. Selling my book. I love to travel and I love to see new places and meet new people. I also love to sniff out new communities and get a feel for the similarities and differences each Jewish community has.
But there’s one thing that is constant. Jewish women.
So Donald Trump is president and half of America is mourning. And plenty are elated. My Facebook feed, mostly non-Orthodox Jews, is dominated by mourning. People lamenting the loss of normalcy, of values, of shattering the glass ceiling once and for all. People describing the emotions like losing a loved one.