Saturday, May 11, 2013

Kibbutz Life, City Style

At the back of our building grows a boysenberry tree, and each year we wait patiently for the berries to bloom and ripen.  This year, because of the astounding amount of rain during the Winter, the tree is bursting with fruit.

For several weeks Raphaela and I would check the tree each morning on the way to Gan, to see if the green had turned to purple.  Now each morning we go outside at the start of the day, and after feeding the street cats, we pick the ripe berries and add it to our breakfast regimen.  No pesticides, all natural sweet boysenberries.

On Shabbat morning yesterday, we took a walk and saw a father arrive with his three sons, all of them in cloth hats and holding baskets, reminiscent of the children's book, "Blueberries for Sal."  We watched as these boys and their father climbed the tree to the highest branch, filling their baskets for a special Shabbat treat.  Raphaela and I joined in for a bit, picking some fruit and eating it on the spot, while I chatted with the father about life, Israel and everything.

I can understand the appeal of that classic Israeli Kibbutz life style, people working together in the fields toward a common goal, sitting together at dinner as a community, supporting one another. I know that model no longer exists, if only in the annuls of the early history of Israel as a country, and it's a shame.

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