Today, I had mostly free of plans. The only thing I arranged was to have lunch with my friend and former Hevruta, Rabbi Peretz Rodman. After a calm morning, I took the 6 bus downtown and had two hours before needing to meet Peretz for lunch. I took a slow tour of book stores in downtown and Meah Shearim before sitting down to read for the final half hour. I restrained myself from buying books but did enjoy two potatoe burekkas.
A few minutes after 1, Peretz joined me with his smiling face and heart-felt laughter. I accompanied him to the bank before we found a small place where I got a heaping plate of Schwarma, rice, beans and more. On the way, he introduced me to the director of Masorti Judaism and I introduced him to Cantor and Mrs. Ed Kulp. Cantor Kulp worked with my brother-in-law Aaron before his retirement. We had seen them over Thanksgiving weekend when we visited Ventnor-Margate.
Before parting, Peretz accompanied me to the Fuchsberg Center for Conservative Judaism. My colleague, Rabbi Jim Lebeau, the center's director gave me a tour and then a computer to use for this first part. I have a few more stops to make in the Center before heading back for a nap (I still have some jet lag).
I spent a while talking to the staff of the Yeshiva about a student applying, the program, how to support it. I connected them with some colleagues who are visiting Israel. Then I caught the 17 bus back to Givat Mordechai (the neighborhood I am staying in). Even though I stayed in the center of town, it was more walking than I do in the US (that is a great thing about Jerusalem--the hills don't hurt with getting exercise either).
I thought I would spend the night at Givat Mordechai when Matt Berkowitz called that he was going out to dinner with a mutual friend--Devora Schoenfeld. I joined them in the German Colony (a historic neighborhood home to great resteraunts and some cool shops). We walked around and looked at the variety of resteraunt types (cafes, meat and dairy, Italian, Japanese, etc.) and chose a small Asian resteraunt that had a few tables. The place, Soya, was a hole-in-the-wall but is located at the corner of Rahel Imeinu and Emek Refaim (the main drag in the German Colony). After a few hours, Matt and Devora went to sleep. I walked around for a while before catching a cab back to the Melammed's apartment.