After many years of anticipating Pesach in Israel, it has finally arrived. For those who know me well, you already know that I have always had a difficult time with the Second Seder, as it was always the most "in-your-face-golus" moment of the year to me. I did all that was required, of course, but deep down, it was always difficult. This year was the beginning of a new period of life in that regard. We joined together with our (wonderful) upstairs neighbors and had a magnificent Seder! It was made all that much more special knowing it was the ONLY one we would make this year. We sang, read the Haggada, ate, enjoyed and then, Seder 5770 was a memory!
On the day of Chag, I woke up early and davened at the early Minyan like usual (6:30am) and had the morning to sit in the beautiful weather to learn and relax. We were out for Seduat Chag and then a nice leisurely walk home for a quiet afternoon.
Before you knew it, the first day of Chag was over and we were making Havdala to begin Chol HaMoed. While I did indeed miss the family in Chicago and all of the usual family traditions, we were "comforted" by the fact that we began a new series of traditions right here in Israel.
This week, we will go to visit my in-laws who are spending Chag on a program in Tel Aviv, I will go to the Kotel for Birkat Kohanim and see what little side trips we may make...
Best wishes of Moadim L'Simcha to all!