Aviva In Poland

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Wonderous Life in Warsaw

Dear Friends Family and Readers
Wow a whole month since I have posted, I really have been so incredibly busy with so much that has gone on. So I will just give the short and sweet run down of what I have been up too. I did move, apartment hunting in Warsaw is a very interesting experience. One of my co workers was put in charge of finding me a new place and together we looked at lots of places, and let me tell you, after 7months in Poland your needs and standards really change. I found a great place that is very close and central, it has is very small and lacks an oven but I love it. My friends all helped move and I got setteled into my new place very quickly-there of course some hilarious stories of figuring out a new apartment, but those will need to be told in person. Right after the move I went to Slovakia for a students seminar which was very interesting, very unlike any other seminar I have ever been on and the bottom line even though we spent 10 hours in small van to get to and from and it was still very fun.
In terms of work Pesach meant a lot of prep, a program for the Seniors, Matzah delivery for the seniors and of course visiting with all my old ladies. All of these projects were a lot of work, a little aggervating but at the end of the day very rewarding.
Pesach of course for me meant a lot of cleaning, a gathering of different food that was sent to Poland from Israel and North America and learning how to make food that I never had to cook before.
The Seders that I had were very different and meaningful. On the first night I attended the large community seder, which fortunatley was divided by Polish and Hebrew, so I attended the smaller Hebrew Seder with many of my close friends. It was very nice, desipte the homesickness that I felt not being with my family. I did bring some of our family traditions to this Seder. On the second night I had a really special oppurtunity to a lead JDC Community Seder for young families and adults. It was a lot of fun, I used my broken Polish and had someone translating and Tal and Osnat brought a lot of ideas and explanations to the Seder as well. Together we know that we gave an interactive fun and informative Seder to people who never would have one.
Now as Pesach is nearing the end, I am sick of Chicken Soup, have gone to the movies twice, have been able to plan some upcoming programs, most excitingly my Dad and Linda's trip to Poland and have gotten numerous emails from people coming on the March of the Living this week. So I am getting ready for a lot of work and fun things coming up!
Sitting in shul a lot these past few days I have thought a lot this year and my Pesach. The message of from being Slaves to being free is a strong one in the Hagaddah and a strong one to Polish Jews today. For me, this year I have felt the message of freedom in a stronger way then I have ever felt before. I have been free to spend a year helping a reviving, dynamic and interesting Jewish Community. I have had the freedom to learn, help and learn more. I hope that the freedom I have felt this year and Pesach is one that I will be able to nurture and maintain. The lessons that I have learnt about what it means to Polish Jews today to having once been an enslaved community in so many ways to now being free are lessons that I will always take with me.
I am looking forward to sharing with you about the March of the Living, my visit from home, Yom Hatzmaut and the birthday party that Tal Osnat and I are having in honour of the three April birthdays we have. Enjoy your holiday
Lots and lots of love from Warsaw