In Ben Gurion Airport we met a young Christian Zionist who wore his Zionism quite openly and proudly.
Karen and I attended our niece Ariella’s wedding in Israel two weeks ago. It was a quick trip, just four days, but it was still enough to create a lifetime’s worth of memories.
In Ben Gurion Airport, there is a spectacular waterfall in the central atrium. The water cascades from the dome in the ceiling to a pool below.
We went from the airport to our friend Rahel Jaskow to change clothing. Then, we grabbed a taxi right to the wedding. Karen and Offspring #2, who flew in from Teaneck, danced the night away. Here, they are doing the Travolta-Thurman dance from “Pulp Fiction.”
The groom’s buddies from the army all looked like Paul Newman in “Exodus.” Let me be the first to say that having a platoon of armed IDF soldiers at a wedding makes for a peaceful and secure celebration.
We spent Shabbat with our beloved cousins Tzvi, Toby and their children in Mitzpei Netofah, a yishuv in the Upper Galilee. Their lovely home is adorned with spectatcular art, all by Toby’s father, Dr. Morton Freiman, a Florida surgeon who retired to Netofah. Here, one of his lovely assemblages hangs in the dining room.
This is another visually dynamic assemblage by Dr. Freiman. When you get up close to examine all the disparate elements, you become paralyzed by the beauty and balance of the piece.
Detail of the free-standing assemblage.
Dr. Freiman has been commissioned by the famed Golani Brigade to sculpt a menorah for their base. Here, Dr. Freiman is interviewed by an IDF unit as he displays the chunk of granite that contains within it a menorah.
Dr. Freiman’s most accomplished and arresting art work is a twenty-foot, free- standing sculpture in the living room. As you can see, it’s composed of empty Bartenura wine bottles, stacked one on top of the other and contained in a custom-fabricated steel support. When the morning light streams through, it is a transcendental experience.
There are 49 bottles in the sculpture. Thus, another layer of meaning, for this is also an Omer counter. The Omer are the forty-nine days between the festivals of Passover and Shavuot. Okay, it’s not very practical, but the reference and clever abstraction make this a profoundly great work of art.
Our Christian Zionist friend had another tattoo to show us. “I want to join the IDF,” he said, “but I’m afraid they won’t take me because I’m not Jewish.” We assured him that the IDF would be thrilled to induct him into service.
Karen and I wish all our friends and relatives a lovely Shabbat and a joyous Chanukah.