Friday, June 5, 2015

This is a Test of the Emergency Broadcast System

This week, the army held a country-wide test of their capability, and that of us citizens, to deal with an attack on our soil.  The first siren went off at 11 am; Raphaela was at school ("We didn't do anything, Mommy.") and I was working.  Together with a client and a few neighbors, we went downstairs to the bomb shelter.

Which was locked tight, and as far as we knew, no one in the building holds the key.  Luckily, a little sticker on the door informed us that the shelter had been inspected at noon, an hour after the siren that had just occurred in that moment.  We marveled at Israel's apparent ability to use time travel to dodge beaurocracy.


The second siren took place at seven pm, while Raphaela was in the bath.  Calmly, she asked me if "this was where we stand like a statue out of respect, or run and hide."


As the kindergarten school year comes to an end, the frequency of multi-child birthday parties has increased as well.  Raphaela asked if there was another party today, and when I answered in the negative, she sighed in relief.  "Mommy, I just can't eat any more birthday cake."


With time to spare before Shabbat, Raphaela and I took a walk to the park down the street from our house.  At some point, I and another father happened to notice a little boy, no more than four years old, frozen with fear and clinging for dear life on a ledge about ten feet off the ground on the playground equipment.  Lord knows how he managed to climb there by himself.

I asked him where his parents were, and he pointed to a BBQ picnic on the grassy area nearby.  I told the parents that they needed to rescue their son, and the boy's father immediately ran over and tried to get to his son, but was unable to reach him.  Another father, a young Israeli in great shape, immediately ran over and scaled the wall, catching the boy before he fell.  Then, with help from the boy's father, they lowered him down to the ground.

An obviously adventurous child, as soon as his legs hit solid ground, he started crying.


On the way out of the park, we happened upon a guitar circle, six older Israeli men singing classic songs from the 60's and 70's.  We joined them for a bit, and after a great version of some Beatle's hits, we head home to start Shabbat.

Now that's a nice way to transition into the weekend.

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