I live in Gush Etzion. Efrat to be exact. Efrat and Gush Etzion’s history is rich with stories of the Jewish people dating back to times of the Torah,leading up to its triumphant return to Jewish hands in 1967. We are part of the Hills of Judea thus accounting for Efrat’s many hills and the man-made stairs to help residents climb between levels of buildings. Efrat is an exerciser’s paradise. Residents get a workout wherever they walk. One of my favorite roads is the one my family calls the forest road. It is a very steep hill (as in my legs are burning after I’ve taken only five steps) on a section of Efrat’s security road that abuts a lovely small forest. At the top of the hill is a wonderful playground.
Today my husband and I walked this hill together and as I looked at my watch I was hoping to make it to the top by 11:00. Today is
At 10:59 as I looked up from my wrist watch I saw the soldier. He was standing among the trees on a rock standing guard. He wasn’t quite at the top of the hill. I approached him, pointed to my watch and asked him in Hebrew if I could stand with him. Somehow standing beside a soldier seemed even more important to me than reaching the top of that hill.
He understood that I was referring to the sounding of the siren. He answered “Of course, I will come to you.” We stood there, the three of us together facing
Just last month when we stood on the Eitam, the newest hill of Efrat, I felt blessed. I could tell my children, standing with me as the sun rose, that we were seeing the sun in the same place it was when The Almighty first created it. Right here, in our land, where creation began.
When the countrywide sirens went off last week for Holocaust Memorial Day, I was overwhelmed at being a citizen of a country that protects its citizens and Jews the world over.
Before 1948, no one really worried about protecting us.
Today, the State of Israel, the state of the Jewish People, has an army. It has a really strong army.
And today the people of
Leora Hyman made aliyah three years ago from