It is the simplest, hardly-noticed occurrence of life – the change of a season. When running around between work and campus and campus and work, I only noticed the change of seasons when it was too hot to wear a coat, or when it was at last too cold to leave the blanket. Even as a workaholic, I’ve always been up for “only 5 more minutes” of snuggling under a warm blanket in winter.
Even though I’m still up for “only 5 more minutes” of enjoying my blanket as a winter joy, once I started traveling as an adult, a lot changed for me and I started being more present in the moment. Travel is good for us – at least it’s good for me – and I notice the changes of seasons more easily now. I am also much more in awe of nature’s vast diversity. I love its flexibility, its ability to change, to grow, to never despair.
That’s why I was so happy when Erik of On My Feet or In My Mind recently tagged me in Booked.net‘s Capture the Season campaign. In this travel blog fiesta, bloggers post photos that capture the sense of the seasons for them. They then tag other bloggers to continue the fiesta.
This tagging is very timely for me. Earlier this week, I wrapped a Colorado post series. In Colorado, I got to experience fall colors and winter wonderland – two seasons in one area in a short amount of time. I feel so blessed just thinking about it now.
The Holiest Day of the Year Captures Memories for Me
The fiesta is also timely for me, because as you read this, Yom Kipur starts in Israel, where I live. Yom Kipur is the holiest yom (day in Hebrew) of the year. It is your last chance to ask others for forgiveness of anything hurtful you might have said or done throughout the past year. It is also your last chance to accept others’ request for forgiveness – for yourself as well as for others. It is also a great opportunity to ask for forgiveness of yourself, of your body, of your dreams – and maybe even accept this forgiveness and commit to a more empowering new year.
Faith has it that, as Yom Kipur comes to an end, God(dess) closes your Book of Life, your personal file if you will, after writing down your verdict. If you celebrate Christmas, you know Santa will bring you presents if you’re “good”. In Judaism, God(dess) will likely give you a longer, happier life if you’re an empowering person to yourself and others.
Since the day is so crucial according to the faith, you’re not allowed to do anything except pray, reflect and spend time with others. If you’re secular, it’s time to bring out those board games or cuddle up in bed with a good book. Many people fast, and all you can think of when you fast is food – especially the big dinner you had before fasting, and even better – the big dinner you will have when the fast comes to a close. Distractions are important and companionship of others helps, though some people choose to sleep off the day.
Traveling far isn’t an option. Cars are so not allowed to drive, that a pregnant friend of mine will need to call for an ambulance if she needs to get to the hospital to give birth. If she and her husband take their car, people will think she’s being disrespectful to this holy day and to their feelings. If you live around a synagogue or close to a religious community, the reaction to you driving might not be so polite. To be honest, though, that not-so-polite reaction will likely come from secular folks as well.
Moreover, roads might have blocking gates, preventing cars from passing in some area. This is great news for kids. There’s not much that can compare to being a secular kid in Israel on Yom Kipur if you can ride a bicycle. In the absolute absence of cars, kids take to the freeway and drive their bicycle to their hearts’ desires. It might be the adults’ queendom every other day, yet it’s a children’s playground on Yom Kipur.
For me, Yom Kipur is about memories. For years, I dug out old albums and looked through them on Yom Kipur. I rediscovered my life, my family, my friends, experiences long forgotten. I would hear the stories behind the photographs or remember them myself.
Capture the Seasons
That’s why I saved my participation in the Capture the Seasons fiesta for today. This evening marks the beginning of 24 holy hours, and there’s nothing like a good walk down memory lane to kick-start this holiday. If I get to travel through all kinds of weathers while doing it – even virtually – the better.
I realize it’s autumn when….
…. I feel it’s chilly enough to bring on a blanket…. yet I need air conditioning again pretty fast.
In Massachusetts, USA, I relished in autumn colors that mingled beautifully with the reddish buildings of Boston’s Beacon Hill.
I realize – and celebrate – it’s winter when….
…. the clouds turn more dramatic. They know the sky is theirs to play.
In Bariloche, Argentina, I relished in high snow with stunning mountains for a backdrop.
I realize it’s spring when….
…. trees start to grow back and flowers light my way wherever I go.
In Ushuaia, Argentina, I relished from the sky, sitting on a cable car chair, as I noticed the first signs of spring in the creeks bellow me…. created from melted snow.
I realize it’s summer when….
…. the sun shines longer, the sky is clearer and the sweat comes easier…. a clear sign that ice cream is needed.
In Tucson, Arizona, I relished in ice cream the summer of late October – though there was no sweat – upon experiencing the odd awe only a desert – or the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum – can cause. This cutie at the Desert Museum did just what I like to do in summers – stay in the shade, preferably somewhere cool.
Thanks so much to Erik for tagging me in this fiesta of season capturing! I admit I was only “supposed” to choose one photo per season, yet I was tempted for a double celebration. Now it’s time to pass the torch and invite other bloggers to participate as well. Here’s my selection of fabulous travel bloggers who better participate or….
I’ll forgive them, because it’s Yom Kipur 🙂
Steve – More Kids than Suitcases
Krista – Rambling Tart
Rich – Unwire Me
Margo – The Travel Belles
Norbert – GloboTreks
Whether you eat or fast, pray or ride bicycle, I hope you have a fun Yom Kipur! Though, technically, you’re supposed to suffer in order to pay for your sins. If you neither celebrate nor suffer on Yom Kipur, I hope you’ll have a fun Tuesday evening and an empowering Wednesday day!
And maybe, just maybe, be a little more forgiving this week. Life is a whole lot easier and enjoyable when we focus on the full half of the lake.
What are your plans for Yom Kipur? What’s your favorite season? How do you know it has arrived? Would you like to be tagged here as well? So many questions! Leave a comment to let me know!