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Can we write on Rosh Hashannah...

Sorry - it's been a while. Most of my posts seem to begin like that recently. Anyway, on the high holidays, I was thinking: Taking an Orthdox view of what can and can't be done on Yom Tov, is God violating the Yom Tov by writing on Rosh Hashannah and sealing on Yom Kippur?

Anyway, the production of Fiddler on the Roof was very good. Very entertaining. It must be difficult performing a play where most of the audience knows the production as well as you do. I'd hate to be Tevye's understudy. I don' t think anything needs to be said about Topol's performance. I thought the Crockerbarry played the Crockerbarry playing Lazar very well. Hodel was good. The dream scene was done very, very well with the obligatory Fruma Sarah in drag. Motel was good but his singing let him down. The constable didn't work for me - he played the role the way I'd imagine John Cleese playing it (as a serious role).

Before the show, Bec and I had breakfast with Rachel, Amos and Gaby. It was good to catch up with them, as I hadn't seen them since the wedding (ours).

Wednesday, Bec and I spent most of the day in the kitchen, because we had my parents and Rev up for the meal before Kol Nidrei. For the meal, we had a vegetarian soup (lamb shank), gefilte fish (Bec made them), chicken schnitzel and baked trout stuffed with macadamia, garlic and tarragon. On the side we had a potato and sweet potato kugel and a couple of salads it was all yummy and we were all full, which is a good way to be going into the fast.

For the Kol Nidrei service, we went to Ballarat synagogue. Without us, there wouldn't have been a minyan. It was a nice enough service, although not the Kol Nidrei I remember as a child. At least it didn't have a choir. I'm not a fan of having a choir in a Jewish service (I don't know other religions, so can't comment). I find them distracting. In any Jewish service, there is a balance between the prayers-as-songs and the prayers-as-messages. I've always found choirs tipping the balance too far towards prayer-as-song. If I want to be entertained, I'll put on a CD.

When I go to pray in a synagogue, I want to do so as a community. I accept differentiating a rabbi, chazzan and a couple of other positions. These are attained by merit, and I can accept the need for one or two leaders of the prayer, just as I can accept the need for leaders in anything. By adding in a choir, it adds in a tier based purely on people's singing ability. I have found the effect tends to be one of quieting the congregation because there are other people who are there to do the praying. I have also found they get a little too...artistic... for my tastes.

After Yom Kippur, we had dinner at Sue and Danny's place to break the fast. After dinner, Bec and I decided that we will go travelling (this was not a spontaneous decision, but this blog only gets the things which have been publicly announced.) Bec has resigned from work and we have put our house on the market. (With Hocking Stuart, if anyone is interested). I hope it sells quickly. We are planning to leave in late November.

For the weekend, I spent the nights at a scout camp and the days working around the house. On Saturday evening we went round to Rachel and Mark's place to tell them (and because a walk did us good!) and ended up staying for dinner. As always, a pleasant time and a nice meal.

Because finishing a thesis is incompatible with keeping a house tidy to sell, I have moved down to Mum and Dad's temporarily. I hope the house sells quickly so that I can move back home, even if it feels very sterile and not-our- house-y at the moment.


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