Jerusalem here I am
Shalom everybody from Jerusalem!
It has been such a long time since either of us has written a travel journal, but we want to keep everyone updated on our lives. First and foremost, Mat and I have had amazing experiences for the past 2+ months in Israel. We got here in time for the holidays and as most of you know there were 4 Jewish Holidays in the month of October and we were celebrating each one of them to their fullest potential!
It has been such a reunion being in Israel. First and foremost seeing close friends that we haven't connected with in a while. Also rediscovering our past with one another; meaning: Mat and I have both spent extensive time in Israel but never with each other...so we have been sharing lots of stories and been strolling down memory lane together. We have also really connected spiritually to this place. Believe it or not this society (middle eastern society in general) places the most emphasis on family and friends and less emphasis on work and jobs, so we have really been connecting with many different kinds of people, celebrating good and hard times with people, connecting with prayer and Shabbat, studying and learning ancient texts, and eating fresh healthy food.
Last week we moved into an apartment in an old stone neighborhood of Nachlaot. The streets are narrow and most roads do not have cars on them. The buildings are really old and have so much character. Also, the rainy season is now so flowers are still blooming and plants are starting to turn green after the long hot parched summer.
Mat studies at a yeshiva (Jewish School) called Simchat Shlomo, a cute yeshiva for men and womyn infused with funky unique people, open hearted conversations, and much learning in Hebrew and Aramaic. I have been attending a few classes there too in my spare time. But my main event is studying herbs. I found a teacher to study with once a week and its really cool! I am going to be shadowing him with he prepares mixtures of medicine, gardens, wildcrafts, etc. It is really neat! I don't know him too well, but he learned herbal medicine from official training in New Mexico and grew up in a community learning from Native Americans. Its great to have such a resource in Israel and I hope I will learn a lot!
I have also been babysitting for a 7 month of baby each afternoon. He is very cute and we get to cuddle every day.
Mat and I really miss everyone and are sad to miss your Birthdays, seeing your children walk for the first time, and see your hair grow grey (just kidding on that one!) Have a great day, much love, julie