Monday, April 11, 2011

If Only....Oy. Oy.

Because I see Passover cleaning (and cleaning in general) as a major hassle, both emotionally and physically, this is the time of year is when I get into what I call, "high comparison mode" especially when it comes to comparing celebrating Passover in Israel and Passover in the States.

And of course the "Next year in Jerusalem!" doesn't make me feel better.

The thick film of dirt on my window reminds me that if I can't see clearly, my vision will be myopic. Thus, I especially, need to remind myself what we came here - for all the professional opportunities we have here in the States.

Truthfully, we can go back to Israel like that. And I know that many people will ask us back home when we visit this June if we are planning to.

If only we could go back knowing that Haim and myself wouldn't be jobless. Haim is over 51 and jobs in israel are scarce for people in this age bracket. I myself am another issue.

So this year will be the fifth year we won't be celebrating Passover with our family and friends.

For me, these are wistful reminders that...

1) The Diaspora can be a lonely place for an Israeli Jew on Passover
2) I don't have Passover holidays off since I work for non-Jewish institutions
3) Pesach in Israel sounds so much celebratory that Passover in Pittsburgh
4) Even with the friends and colleagues I know here, there is nothing like family and friends back home
5) As a teacher in Israel, I had a full week before Passover to clean for Passover. Here I can barely make an hour! Okay, okay, now I'm kvetching!
6) Post Passover is spent visiting friends, traveling and taking time to be with families. Every year, I work hard at strengthening my support system - it comes and goes and we spend Passover shopping.
7) In Israel, I'd take a big bucket of water and splash it around the floor. That's the norm for cleaning. Here's people would think I'm meshugana. The carpet in the States is a drag.
8) Pesach in Israel = eating my MIL's OKRA.
9) Kitniyot (beans, legumes) in Israel are considered to be kosher for Passover as opposed to the Ashkenazic kosher. Here, they are not Kosher.
10) Passover is a time for relaxing - taking store and looking ahead. Haim and I both have to work.

So instead of looking at the cup half empty, I'll look at what we do have.

When you've lived in another country for so long, you just can't help but to compare, wonder and reflect.

1 comment:

  1. I love what you share here. It is so inspiring to take notice and appreciate what I value as you do with your culture. Here we get so caught up with the fast pace, the material things, and money I think we forget what it is that is important. Family, belief systems, our heritage, and home. May Passover be meaningful to you this season and may you be blessed.