Tashlikh is the sort of annual ceremony I can manage.
Its alignment with lunar calendars and the turn of the seasons appeals to the crunchier corners of my soul, and its promise of a fresh start speaks to my itinerant 'Navy-brat' nature.
Plus, there's no fancy cooking involved.
Crunchy, slate-cleaning, and stress-free!
And yet -- precipitated by disagreements about which 'natural body of water' we should trek to, and exacerbated by nerve-jangling traffic, post-school-day lethargy, and a general lack of enthusiasm by those along for said trek -- my jaw and chest were tight, and those twin vertical lines between my eyebrows were very very visible as we pulled into the $$$ parking lot where Sunset spits you out at the Pacific.
But we were going to do this thing, dangit!
This was as much as I could get out of him.
He had not given this much thought, despite Poppy's explanation of Rosh Hashanah and the Days of Awe before dinner last night, despite having plenty of time for self-reflection on the drive across town
He said, "I thought this was going to be more of a 'think' than a 'do' sort of thing."
(I was grinding my teeth and snapping at them both at this point.)
|(mine, still oblivious to the irony)|
Totally and completely forgetting the whole point of the Days of Awe, I sat there fuming over the fact that Ander and Zaza were more interested in building sand castles and running through the turning tide than in this Very Important Ceremony.
But as the sea air did its primal magic -- and I actually started to see the joyful, sunset-tinged scene in front of me -- my breathing slowed, my shoulders lowered, the knot in my chest loosened, and I (oh so sheepishly) realized I was exhibiting almost all of the bad habits and rotten tendencies I was hoping to throw away in the New Year.
Because really, they are all 'Days of Awe,' these days I share with them.
There is painful introspection, and heaps of red-faced repentance. And there is also the endless promise of second (and third) chances.
But mostly there is constant, gob-smacked awe.