Shabbat -- from the Smolenskys
about Shabbas, also by Moshe & Yaffa:Our cautious walk of four blocks to synagogue on Shabbat was quiet. We know that sirens could sound at any time and it is not recommended to be on the street at that time.. A quick lesson in sirens/attacks.There are five types: 1. sirens first and then rockets 2. rockets first and then sirens 3. both together 4. rockets only and the best, 5. Sirens only.Sadly, the huge synagogue was empty for the exception of 7 men, therefore there was no minyan. We know of only three shuls in this area that are open to any extent and perhaps three in the Old City of Tzfat including the ancient Abuhav Shul that sustained some damage from a recent hit. This is out of around 100 shuls in Tzfat.Around mid afternoon two young soldiers came to our building with a clip board. They were determining how many people were here and they checked the shelter. It was declared unfit; nothing new to us. They indicated that things may get worse in Tzfat and that they were preparing for a possible evacuation. G-d willing it won't come to that. However, it does make you think about what we would take if we were forced to leave. What is really important in our life that we can fit into our little car?Around 3:30 Shabbat afternoon the first attack commenced followed by two others. Some rockets were very close to our house. Around 8 PM another attack with rockets peppering the area and some were very, very close. One hit in the Canaan neighborhood about 4 blocks from our house between Beit Chana Girls' School and the Chabad Shul. A rocket smacked into a power box next to a sports building and knocked out electricity to a portion of this neighborhood. We had electricity but the street lights were out and it was pitch black. I could see up the street that there were no lights in any of the homes. After 30 minutes the power was restored.A scene in Fiddler on the Roof comes to mind when the Police Chief stood in the street of the little village after all the Jews were ordered to leave. The wind was the only companion of the Police Chief and he obviously missed the presence of the Jews. We who remain in Tzfat miss those who left for whatever reason. The City of Tzfat looks sad in one way but those who are here and who are able, are helping in many different ways so the city retains some life.Sunday started out with a bang with the first attack about 10:45 AM (as generally expected). I had just brought Roxy up from the garden in anticipation and Tubby-cat decided it was time to come in, as well. We lost track of how many attacks or how many rockets slammed into the city or swooshed past our neighborhood. Later we learned that two people were injured and there was one fatality. A rocket hit near, or on, the police station located above us and another missed the gas station on the main road near the new Macbi Health Building. Others landed in parts unknown.In spite of what's swirling around us politically or swooshing over us, Lev U'Neshama is planning on a produce delivery tomorrow, Monday, to about 40 families in hard-pressed southern Tzfat neighborhoods where the hospital has been a main target. We will maintain our course of helping those in Tzfat as long as we can.The purported "cease fire" doesn't elicit any hope in most people in Israel. We pray for our abducted soldiers whose return is supposed to be a main item in any cease fire. Any mention of them? The Hezbollah said it would continue fighting as long as Israel has soldiers in Lebanon. If we leave, the Hezbollah will claim victory and regroup and then what? Lebanon says it will send 15,000 of its troops to Southern Lebanon. They are mostly Shiite so they would probably side with the Hezbollah so then Israel will have to face more troops. Wonderful! And Hezbollah will invite International forces from the UN to smoke hashish with them? We're wondering what the Master Plan holds in store for us and we pray that the suffering we've endured will not be for naught.Keep tuned to the conturing saga of the People of Israel.Moshe & Yaffa, your "on-the-spot war corespondents from Tzfat"