There is something so attractive about Kibbutz life. There is the beauty of nature. The sense of community. Kids running freely in the streets. And neighbors walking into your house unannounced.
This past Shabbat I had that same old thought running through my head as I wandered the grounds of Kibbutz Sa’ad. Wouldn’t my family be happier on a Kibbutz, than the hectic city life? I pondered the thought over and over again in my head as my 3-year-old son ran after ducks in the petting zoo. Then again when I left the windows open, and didn’t have to worry about someone breaking into the house. And when my younger son, 10-months-old, was being taken care of by triplet brothers who all wanted to hold him.
Those thoughts went boom on Wednesday. The boom being a rocket that landed in the petting zoo, where just days before my son gently pet a pony. That boom was the sound of another rocket hitting the barn, instead of the usual moo of cows. There were another 70 booms in the area, in the last two days. And while no one was physically injured, the damage was done.
The peace and quiet of my Shabbat stay seems to be a distant dream and the nightmare of a barrage of rockets, my rude awakening. I think of the Sa’ad family we just visited and how normal their lives are. And how not normal too. They are hard workers, providing for their sons, and opening their home up to kids from abroad and lone soldiers. Not only did they invite us for Shabbat, they even made us special homemade pizza Saturday night. It was delicious if you must know, and I had about 12 slices, even though I was still full from the tons of other food we ate.
The rockets continue to fall. Even after the ceasefire. The booms don’t make international headlines. But they are there with me all the time. Yet despite it all there is still something so attractive about Kibbutz life. Thank you to the family that showed me that. To the people of the south who continue to live their lives. And hopefully the ducks that keep on quacking.
Here’s to a Shabbat Shalom for all.