The first day of Chol Hamoed Succot 5771 was a tremendous success as hundreds made their way up through the Hevron hills to Adurayim for a simcha even though it was a hot day and got hotter.
Families came in buses, loaded vans and private cars as young kids and old kids unloaded the vehicles and hurried to the activities which awaited them. The last remaining building of the abandoned IDF Army base Adurayim may be in need of a lot of cleanup & repair but all this did not deter the crowd of adults who crammed into the meeting room to hear VIP speakers: Rabbi Dov Lior of Kiryat Arba, MK Professor Aryeh Eldad, Yehuda Glick.
Young children gathered to paint a banner of the Temple Mount provided by their dedicated art teacher, Yehudit Eisenberg. Each of them really take serious their part of the painting! I drooled over the banner trying to come up with a plan to get it into my Succah, but in the end I surrendered and let it go to a much larger cause.
The older kids – well, they just went wild over the SUMA wrestling as they battled it out for the place of #1 Suma Victor. Believe me! Suma wrestling can get ‘purty ruff’! Especially, when the battle to be in first place is between brothers.
Everyone in between got plenty of exercise on the inflatable slides, climbing walls and just bouncing in mid-air. But in the end, not only the children who participated were drained of energy, but also those of us looking on. Okay, you go figure.
Balloonists, Elazar Brandt and his wife Krine, worked hard to satisfy the demand for creative & colorful balloon-wear. They kept up with the demand with a little extra help from Rene Morgulis and her daughter Chaya. By the end of the event, they had designed some 300-350 balloons. Satisfied customers proudly donned colorful hats, or waving swords!
Plenty of IDF troops kept close guard over the place full of activities. When Women in Green provide these special events, there is never had a dull moment for the soldiers who keep watch in the hills. They are never bored as the children surround them asking so many questions. The attention of bright smiling little faces or the boldness of adolescents keep them entertained
The Mussa Berlin family struck up the band and put the men into action as they mounted the children on their shoulders and began to dance to the music, ending the event in the true tradition of Simchat Succot.
By the time came to say “l’hitraot” and part company, kids were exhausted, parents were wilted having used up their energy, yet all separated with joy that renews our strength to enter Shabbat with rejoicing. A small reminder of what Am Israel will eventually be at all times! (Women for Israel’s Tomorrow website can be found at http://www.womeningreen.org)