Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Limmud reminders for next year

Here's the fun part. And now, to business.

  • My husband's idea to take our bag of light-switch covers, a timer, and a nightlight was brilliant. The timer's plug didn't fit the outlet, so we used the nightlight, which may have saved me from breaking another wrist or two--it was pitch-black in our room after sundown, and that ottoman in front of the armchair at the foot of the bed was almost impossible to see! (For future reference, remember to turn the night-light's shade to face the bed, in order to cut the glare and make it easier to sleep.) And we used the light-switch covers to help us remember to leave the foyer light off, the bathroom light on, and that noisy bathroom ventilation fan off.

  • Don't forget your neck-roll pillow, next time--a rolled-up tee shirt doesn't work quite as well.

  • It was a good idea to leave the apartment with both your camera and your Chai necklace already around your neck, so that you wouldn't have to figure out where to pack them and would have easy access to the camera. It was also a good thing that you remembered to recharge both camera batteries.

  • It was not a good thing that you completely forgot that you should never travel with a pocketless skirt, because a gal always needs pockets in which to put things that should be easily accessible, such as a room key, tissues, and, after Shabbat/Sabbath, a cell phone. Next year, take your navy skirt that does have pockets and doesn't have belt loops (because you're going to enjoy someone else's cooking too much), and the gray knit jacket with lapels, which also has pockets, matches that skirt reasonably well, and is heavier than your gray jacket without pockets. (Don't take the pocketed gray skirt--it's at least an inch shorter, and the hotel is freezing!)

  • Before Shabbat, be sure to open a bottle of the shampoo provided by the hotel--you can use the shampoo as liquid hand soap.

  • Remember to look for balloons or other markers indicating tables for those wanting to sing z'mirot at dinner on Erev Shabbat.

  • Get up early enough on Saturday to davven/pray from the Birkot HaTorah/Torah blessings through the "Rabbi Yishmael omer" quote. Include the full three paragraphs of the Sh'ma, so that you can grab a small bread-free breakfast before Shacharit/Morning Service. This early davvening will kill two birds with one stone, since not only is breakfast scheduled before Shabbat/Sabbath morning services, but also, the traditional egalitarian minyan seems always to start the public service right after Rabbi Yishmael omer, at Mizmor, Shir Chanukat HaBayit, L'David (Psalm 30). Note that a good place to davven bi-y'chidut (by oneself) is in the relatively untraveled corridor leading to the Bentley room, which is in an obscure spot off the beaten track and invisible from both the lobby and the elevator bank. An employee told me that the windows there face east.

  • There's pepper in the egg salad, so you'd best avoid it.

  • Remember never to put anything irreplacable in your Limmud bag--one poor soul accidentally exchanged her own Limmud bag for someone else's, and lost her cell phone in the process!

  • Get to the daily Shacharit early, so that you'll have time to put on your tallit, lay tefillin, and davven through Rabbi Yishmael omer before the service begins.
I may add more reminders, if I can think of any. Feel free to add your own suggestions in the comments.



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