Mama Deb (mamadeb) wrote,
Mama Deb

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Tales of the Synagogue

A few weeks ago, I went to a meeting of the synagogue Chesed Committee, where I volunteered to be the mailing person - the one to send out postcards for shiva or whatever. I heard nothing from the heads of the committee since.

This changed Thursday night, when all of a sudden, the head of the committee calls me and tells me to get the mailing list from the president. I send him an email. An hour or so later, he calls me to say that someone just lost his brother and we have to send out cards, and *then* he sees my email and sends out the mailing list.

Turns out, other than the unfortunate death, this all was the result of an argument between the president and the head of the committee, over the goals of the committee.

Good thing I cook my Shabbat meals on Thursday night, no? Because Jonathan went to the post office twice - once for postcards, once to mail (and thank goodness he'd taking Thursday and Friday off) and I had to go to Staples to get labels and copies. We'd printed out a page full of the information text ("We regret to inform you...shiva will be at...") to fit the stickers, I bought a package of the labels of the right size, and had them run off twelve pages, since I was there anyway. Cost me .07 a sheet.

Came home, did the address labels, which required readjusting margins after the mail merge, and waited for J. to come home with the postcards, at which point we spent about a half hour sticking labels onto the prepaid post cards. We didn't bother with a return address. Then Jonathan took a car service to the post office *again* to mail out the postcards, sorted by zip code.

If I'd had to cook, it would have been impossible, but as it was, it really wasn't a problem. And on Monday, Jonathan will pick up 450 postcards and next Tuesday, we'll get a stamp with the return addess.

I've been getting many and repeated thanks for what I did, and I'm glad for that,but I have to say - I'd made this commitment. It only makes sense to follow through, doesn't it? And next time, it'll go much smoother.

Meanwhile, next Shabbat is the "Meet your Neighbors" lunch. That's when people in the synagogue are matched up, hosts to guests, so they, well, meet. This was great last year because we'd just joined.

This year, we'd volunteered to be hosts, despite the shape of our house (looks like a tornado hit it). However, a week ago, the woman organizing this called to say that they had more hosts than guests and would we like to come to her house? We said yes, and frankly, I was relieved.

In fact, believing people wanting were wanting guests, I told a friend of ours, whose brother was coming to visit next week, to just tell her this and she'd find them a house. Well, guess where they're going to lunch? Yep. This is not actually a problem. We'll get the house straightened up and I already had the menu planned. And there would one of two other men as well - one of whom has been a guest in our house before. And that's whom it turned out to be. Except I just called the third man and he's not certain he'll be there.

So, we'll have two kohanim (members of the priestly caste) instead of three, and still have our mezumim for the grace after meals - special blessings that we say if there are three or more men present *or* three or more women with two or fewer men present. And, because of the honor of having kohanim, I think we'll have the man leading the grace do so over wine. Also, it's Rosh Chodesh, which makes it extra special.

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