I'm trying to avoid using the word "last" to describe the many events happening over the course of this week, but this post is a description of the last Shabbat we had as Nativ in Yeruham.
Friday was mostly spent packing and cleaning. Eventually came the time to light candles, however, and the moving craze ceased for 25 hours. We had our own tefillot in the park – I did Kabbalat Shabbat and Seth did Ma'ariv. It's hard to have a contained kahal in an outdoor environment, but it was a sweet way to bring in Shabbat for our last time as the Yeruham track. From there, we went to our host families. The Strausslers had a couple over that is getting married this week, and they were nice. By the time we washed our hands it was already 9:30 – the reality of Shabbat starting late here! Food was delicious as usual, though, and was worth waiting for. Everyone was a little tired – and our Hebrew and English (respective to those of different native tongues) was not as easy to use, but we made it through having had some good conversation. We left at around 11:30 and it was straight to bed for me.
Shabbat morning started a bit rough when I stained my shirt putting food on the blech for lunch and I didn't realize the gravy was all over the pan. Later I would forget to put Tide on the shirt, and the stain didn't come out in the laundry. But tefillot were nice – I got one last opportunity to daven Shacharit on behalf of the congregation. A man blew up at someone sitting next to him before Musaf for talking, but as should be done, nobody let it interfere and the service went on. In the end they acknowledged our leaving Yeruham and had a hearted thank-you to Nativ. I went home and read for a couple of hours, and then we had lunch together. Unfortunately, we ate outside and it was way too hot. But then I took a nap, talked to Razie for a little while, and at 6 p.m. I went to the Matnas for Seudat Shlishit. Throughout the week they had a piyyut festival, and they had the final thing at Seudat Shlishit; we had Nativ sicha at 6:45, though, so we got the food but missed the piyyut part. The sicha was about the conversion bill floating around the Kenesset and the outrageous control the Haredim have. After Havdallah, we had a Melave Malka for our host families to thank them for opening their homes to us over the course of our stay in Yeruham. Tributes were also made to the community in general for their embracing us and to Yoram for coordinating everything. And that wraps up the 2nd to last Shabbat of Nativ.