Wednesday, June 21, 2006

The Zionist Congress in Shiloh!

A few days ago I was asked if I could speak to a group that was coming to Shiloh; it was the World Zionist Congress. Our "town administrator," for whatever reason, decided that I was just the one. It's nice to be appreciated, but the only problem was that Wed. afternoon is babysitting time for my grandchildren.

To make it short, it worked out "fine," if you can call it that, and since the girls weren't feeling well, they were taken here, and my "life guard" son and I shared the fun.

Instead of the "we're not sure too many will be coming out there," the delegates surprised everyone by signing up in numbers far more than expected. Two full buses came out to Shiloh and environs.

Of course they were late, but we did everything that had been planned. I was told to take the first bus, since a "surprise" was waiting, an old friend of my late in-laws.

I had the driver drive them around my neighborhood while I in rapid-fire Hebrew-English (simultaneously) gave a guided tour, history lesson etc. You have to be a bissel hyper to do it. Then we went down to the famous Mishkan Shiloh Beit Knesset, designed to resemble the Holy Tabernacle, which stood in ancient Shiloh for 369 years.

There I found myself appointed as MC, totally unexpected, especially when I was informed that I had been nominated to translate the last speaker. First they met three of the four generations of the Ackerman-Podiak (Spetter) clan. Cathy and Elisheva spoke beautifully.

Lastly I had to translate for Rabbi Brom, the Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshivat Hesder Shiloh. I don't think I did too great a job, but I luckily had help. It's a lot to remember, and I wasn't prepped in advance.

From what I was told, the large number of participants on the tour here weren't all happy that the yishuvim exist. Some of them had been driving the others crazy with their nastiness. But I'm glad they did come. Maybe seeing our communities will make a difference, a good one. I'm sure that they weren't prepared for the reality. All of those I spoke to were lovely, good Jews who care about our country.

B'Ezrat Hashem, Yihiyeh Tov
G-d willing, it will be good!

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Batya,

I first came cross your blog on

http://www.israelforum.com/blog_home.php

It is really fascinating reading.

Yishar Koach. You guys at places Shilo are the real Israeli heroes.

Batya said...

thanks

Honestly, life in Shiloh is so wonderful, I don't see it as any extraordinary effort.