Two hours to Binghamton on Tuesday
Overnight at a hotel outside Binghamton
Almost five hours, including three rest stops, to reach the Canadian border
Ninety minutes at Immigration while they processed paperwork for us
Another almost two hours to reach our new home in Toronto
And we’re here, thank Gd, with a roof over our heads, a phone and an Internet connection, and plumbing that will work really soon, I’m told.
And we said tefillat haderech this time, I’m glad to say.
Unfortunately, I completely forgot that I had purchased French-lesson CDs for the car ride; they were buried under tefillin, Boost, a davening jacket, sefarim and computer equipment on the front side of my car. So some of the culture upgrade will need to hold off.
Still, along the way we discovered new cultural heights in our children’s education:
Parent: Yes, they say Zed instead of Z in Canada.
Child: That means our name will sound even funnier in Canada… Torch-zed-iner?
Parent: Did you know it was 400 miles from Allentown in Pennsylvania to Wiliam Allen Road in Toronto?
Child: Abba, that can’t be!
Parent: What do you mean?
Child: They switched to kilometers in the middle!
Child, pointing to bilingual sign in the Immigration office: I know that the one that starts with “Le” is in Canadian.
Despite the lack of French CDs, I did have plenty to ponder en route.
I've been mulling Hosheia (Hosea); I expect to start a series on Trei Asar after Succot, starting from the top with that oft-neglected navi (prophet). I think people see the whole Gomer bat Divlayim sequence and get scared off, but it's a book of fascinating depth, particularly in its observations on relationships - Spouses, Parents/Children, Leaders/Followers, Gd/Nation.
There is parental mercy on children, and parental cruelty toward children.
There are expectations and betrayal, and the question of who apologizes first.
And on that theme of apologies - What constitutes true repentance?
Korbanot fit in, as well - what constitutes a proper gift?
And beneath it all - May we truly compare our relationship with Gd to a human relationship, or is that all just over-simplified metaphor?
Yes, this should be very interesting.