Sunday, January 17, 2010

Day 177: look how far we've come

I was chatting with my friend Kelly yesterday, and she pointed out to me that today is actually the one year anniversary of our road trip to D.C. for President Obama's Inauguration. Time is funny, because in some ways it feels like it was yesterday, and in others it feels like it was so much longer ago than just one year.

It was such an amazing trip for so many reasons - the sense of adventure and excitement, being able to spend a few days out of Chicago, driving halfway across the country and back in a giant purple minivan... President Obama's campaign was the first Presidential campaign that I really involved myself in, and being able to see it come to fruition was so fulfilling. I got to see Pete Seeger (adorable!) and Bruce Springsteen and James Taylor and Steve Carrell and that guy from Harold and Kumar go to White Castle in concert. I had lunch with Jason, and met the D.C. Avodah-niks, and ate the biggest slice of pizza I have ever eaten (Jumbo Slice. check it out). I watched Senator Obama become President Obama, and then departed on one of the longest car trips of my life, where I heard Fear of Sleep for the first time.

More than anything, though, the thing I remember about that trip is that it was the last time I saw Grandma Marilyn - several of my friends spent the morning volunteering, but I hadn't seen Grandma since the August before that, and I wanted to spend some time with her. My Aunt Susan was there as well - she cooked a wonderful breakfast, and the three of us just sat and talked for hours. I told Grandma that I was learning how to knit, and she gave me some of her old knitting needles to take with me. It's one of the best memories I have of her, and it's also one of the hardest, because for the first time I saw how sick she really was. I can't believe that was a year ago.

I am currently in Jerusalem, on vacation. The first semester of classes ended last Thursday, and our next semester starts a week from tomorrow, so we all have a little bit of a break to take some deep breaths and recharge. I have...very few plans for this week. I'm thinking of going to Tel Aviv on Tuesday as long as it's sunny, so I can wander around Nachalat Binyamin and dip my toes in the Mediterranean, and then on Thursday night I'm heading to Arad with my friend Sharon (Sharon from Pardes, not Sharon from N.C.) to stay with her aunt for Shabbat. I'm looking forward to a few days in the desert - it's always so quiet, which is nice, and the stars are so beautiful. Other than that I plan to read and catch up on sleep and watch a few movies. It should be nice and relaxing!

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