Friday, January 20, 2017

One Hundred Year War

When did I study the Hundred Year War? Junior high, high school, college? Not only do I not remember when I learned about it, I also don’t remember at all what I learned.  All except the name and the impression it made on me.
courtesy of

Friday, January 13, 2017

Nachul Amud: A Site in Israel

Probably every healthy couple has moments where one looks at the other and wonders why in the world they have stayed married. I know my husband and I have had several. The one I remember most happened in the bottom of a canyon twenty-seven years ago.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

A Dream Abandoned: In honor of the fast of the Tenth of Tevet that marks the siege of Jerusalem when the first Holy Temple was destroyed as well as a day of remembrance for those who were murdered in the Holocaust.

As a girl I longed to visit Europe. Heidi’s Alps, Hans Christian Anderson’s Denmark, Gigi’s Paris, and Holland of The Winged Watchman had all captured my imagination. How I wanted to see them with my own eyes! Then I learned more and more Jewish history. My desire waned. There was just one place I hadn’t given up on and that was Jesberg, Germany.

A small village, about an hour’s drive from Frankfort, it wasn’t a tourist spot. My sole desire to go there was because it was the birthplace of my father and his home until 1937 when he fled the Nazis at age seventeen. Pictures and stories of his life there only whetted my appetite to see Jesberg.
The Synagogue in Jesberg with my father and his cousin, Jack, circa 1944

Sunday, January 1, 2017

A Post Chanukah Miracle reprinted from December, 2012

Most of us expect miracles at Chanukah and our senses are attuned to noticing them. For the Rubin family, however, their miracle happened after Chanukah was over. It was in 2001, a period in Israel that was marked by almost daily terror attacks. In the month of December alone a total of thirty-seven Israelis were murdered and over two hundred and fifty injured. There had been three major terror attacks and Hamas had claimed responsibility for all of them.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Trick or Treat?

courtesy of keithroysdon

“Trick or treat for UNICEF,” my cousin and I cried out enthusiastically just as our Sunday school rabbi had instructed us.

However, the reaction of the man at the door was not what we’d expected. He scowled and gave an unequivocal refusal. Behind us were a group of costumed youngsters holding out their sacks to collect goodies.  For them the man had a smile.

“Sure,” his voice boomed out. “I give the American way!”

Friday, December 23, 2016

Who’s Miriam the Maccabee

courtesy of Avraham Silvers

“In fifty meters,” so intoned the Waze’s voice, “turn left on Miriam the Maccabee Street.”

“Who’s Miriam the Maccabee?” I asked the Israeli-born driver.

“Ah,” she smiled. “You never heard of Miriam the Maccabee?”

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

A True Story

As Chaim’s luxury home in Bnai Brak neared completion he looked forward to planning the housewarming ceremony. He spoke to caterers, asked various rabbis to make speeches, and drew up the guest list. Heading the list were his parents but his father made a stipulation.

“I will only come,” he said, “If you find two needy orphans and take care of all their needs so they can marry and build their own home.”