I just returned to Jerusalem from a weekend in Tzfat. My friend and I spent some time speaking about how there were simply no words to describe the experience of being there. Any attempt to put the time into words would never do it justice. I mean, one could try; if an article had to be written, it could be. But really the only people who would understand would be those who'd been there, for whom one wouldn't even need words. All I could come up with while there, when I would try and compose something in my head, was a series of moments.
My friend's look of surprise when I walked onto Livnot's campus, wishing her "שבת שלום, לא בפלפון, לא בסקאיף..." (Shabbat Shalom, not on a cell phone, not on Skype...).
"Welcome Home," from one of the staff members, with whom I share a web of connections. My whole body slightly trembling from the emotion of being there.
The breeze on the roof. The sunset on the roof. The full moon on the roof. Sleeping under the stars on the roof. Sunrise on the roof. The roof.
Waking up to the sound of davening from the many surrounding synagogues.
Chevre. Happy niggun. All of the "Livnot songs."
The "baby on campus" climbing onto a chev's back, riding him like a donkey.
Being able to introduce a friend to Tzfat, to Livnot.
Inspired conversations. Heschel.
The most overwhelming compliments I think I have ever received.
Have I mentioned the breeze? The air in Tzfat is simply different.
Thank you to Livnot 240 for welcoming me, and my friend, into your group for your final shabbat together. It was lovely to meet all of you.
To my friend who came along, thank you for... well... אין לי מילים.
And now? Well, now I am off to a reunion for which I've yearned since leaving last August... every time I went "to Carolina in my mind," in part, I went to see him too...
Shavua tov, u'lehitraot...