Editor’s Wrapup: Migrants
The immigrants who arrived in Israel over the past century came mostly by boat or airplane, but it’s the voyage our forebears from Egypt made on foot that is at the core of Jewish history. So it’s fitting that this month’s issue of Hadassah Magazine focuses on walking.
Rochelle Furstenberg writes about the development of Shvil Yisrael, the Israel National Trail, 584 miles of winding hiking trails that run the length of the nation. As she reports, beginning on page 32, each year thousands of hikers use the paths for exercise, family activity, observing nature and getting to know their own country better.
Whether traversing Sinai or walking the Israel Trail, the most basic equipment is footwear. As Barbara Sofer reports (page 36), Israel is more than capable of meeting the need. Though it is better known for high tech and agricultural exports, the country’s shoe industry—from sandals to high heels—has gained footholds all over the world.
Two other articles in this issue deal with the short walk taken by brides and grooms and the longer journeys parents and friends often take to participate. David W. Weiss writes of the close relationship he developed over the years with an Arab family and the invitation he and his wife received to attend a family wedding in Nazareth. As he describes it (page 44), the wedding was an occasion to reflect on a good friendship and also the gulf between the communities from which the friends come.
For Michele Chabin, the wedding was within the family but the journey was much longer—to the Caribbean island of Tobago (page 70). In addition to the trip she and her husband made to meet their son’s future non-Jewish in-laws, they also had the challenge of making a kosher wedding on an island with no Jewish community. When it was over, their new daughter-in-law described the experience as magical. In other words, it was a real trip. —Alan M. Tigay