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IT RACED BY with tire-screeching fury, resulting in whiplash and motion sickness. My clients shared tales of renting cabins next to Lake Como in Italy and sabbath meals in Switzerland. One friend fulfilled a lifelong dream of visiting Alaska, and another went on a powerful heritage tour of Poland. The highlights of my summer? One night I ate fish and ... Read More »

Tweet, Tweet

TOO BIG A job for even the Israeli Army, an infernal battle against pigeons in my pantry is an unwinnable war. Google’s best suggestion is seven drops of both lemon and peppermint oils in a diluted vinegar solution, generously sprayed on perching areas. The pigeons now smell great and have lovely complexions. More have arrived to “the spa.” It started ... Read More »

Go Tell It on the Mountain

I COULD MAKE Jewish jokes about food and fasting but, like last month’s matzo, this would grow stale. Which is why, when speaking of Shavuot, I will refrain from talking about cheesecake and blintzes. I will not refrain from eating them but will only mention that, unlike other major holidays, the reason we eat dairy might have to do with ... Read More »

Say “Ah”

A RELATIVELY TERRIFYING medical test occurred at an ungodly hour because the hospital owns one MRI scanner. In the middle of a freezing winter night, testing for potential diagnoses that one does not want to hear uttered and I went alone. My husband, a man who never goes anywhere and never has anything to do if it doesn’t involve me, ... Read More »

Tabloid Leadership

I’VE GIVEN SOME thought, recently, to the naming, blaming and shaming of people in the front-page worlds of performance arts, publishing and business who may have abused their relative positions by sexually subjugating others. More shocking than the tawdriness of the tales is the arrogance that led some to believe that they are important enough to wield abuse and call ... Read More »


AS HARD AS the advertising companies in this corner of the world may try, Christmas just doesn’t have the marketing appeal that it does in the West. It isn’t that Christmas doesn’t happen here; Jerusalem is where the entire episode unfolded. For anyone who wants to re-live the birth, life, death and/or tale of Jesus replete with mangers, Magi and  ... Read More »


WAITING FOR MY assigned room, I sat in the sun-drenched solarium staring at the first of many inedible meals to be served over the next few days.  I was intensely aware of the mingling of gag-inducing odors that are particular to medical facilities: barium enemas, disinfectants, greasy food-trays.  The resulting pain of total knee replacement would be addressed with morphine, ... Read More »

The Teaching Bench


IT WAS A Friday night like many others. Candles lit, table set, side dishes plated in my favorite pieces of pottery. The challahs were still warm, proudly sitting beneath an embroidered cloth; my damp-from-the-shower hair was neatly tucked inside a colorful headscarf.  The sky rapidly darkened to an inky blue-black from which stars popped out from their hiding places in ... Read More »

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