The people who invented the iPhone loved their mothers. The inventors told themselves to make a phone with a camera that even their mothers could use. And they did. I loved snapping photos with my new iPhone 4S when I visited Zefat on February 20th, forty-six and a half years after my first visit to the Queen of the Galilee. In the summer of ’66 I took photos with a Kodak Instamatic. Then I was enamored with the holy Jews and their holy laundry hanging across filthy alleys. This time I was enamored by blue. Zefat is definitely a spiritual place because of all the blue.
The Evil Eye is afraid to get too close to Zefat and therefore the people who live in this city of Kabbala and goat cheese have only Good Luck Health and Happiness. The Good Inclination motivates everything they do. At least this is what I imagined until I asked directions from a man who happened to have been born in Zefat and couldn’t wait to curse the current spiritual seekers who do not serve in the Israeli army like his three children did and who take the Halacha much too seriously, as opposed to his generation that belonged to B’nai Akiva and danced boys with girls at the dangerous age of fourteen and nobody ever became pregnant. I didn’t take this gentleman’s photo with my beloved iPhone 4S because his words broke the Zefat spell. When I returned home to Beit Zayit, I decided to bring a piece of Zefat into my life. No, I am not going to read the Zohar or seek the Holy One Blessed Be He. Rather, when the warm weather comes on a regular basis, I will paint the front door blue, just like the sky hills air doors railings and bricks in the Holy City of Zefat.
Loved what you wrote and what you photographed and I shall get a smart phone as soon as I am convinced I will not be running after people and making them look at pictures of my grandchildren. You also made me think of the late Rabbi David Hartman of beloved memory who said that the most important thing is hesed. Bashing the Haredim and loving the army is so IN these days.
If I made you think of the late Rabbi David Hartman, I’m flattered. Re your becoming an obnoxious person who shows everyone her 378 photos of her grandchildren on her iPhone, it doesn’t have to happen. Only when someone asks.
Bringing the blue of Zefat to your door sounds great. Enjoy.