Friday, September 24, 2010
Spying Succot in Jerusalem
I've always loved that quirky Jewish Israeli, especially in cities like Jerusalem, architecture where מרפסות mirpessot, balconies, terraces are specially designed and placed according to Halacha, Jewish Law to enable the building of kosher succot for each apartment.
In more frugal (and less egalitarian) times there was barely enough space for one person, the male head of the household, to have a strictly kosher succah seat. A friend of mine who grew up in Jerusalem's Bayit V'Gan neighborhood in an apartment like that once told me that every year her father would call on the local rabbi, HaRav Min HaHar, to pay a "house call" and inspect the succah to make sure it had enough space for him to sit, eat and say the appropriate prayers.
Today's Torah observant Jewish families have larger succot, and frequently there are two, one for sleeping and one for eating, even in the cities. And it's the norm for Jerusalem's commercial streets to have succot on the sidewalks next to restaurants.
I've always enjoyed listening to neighbors singing holiday songs in their succot.
Chag Succot Sameach
Have a Truly Joyous Holiday!