By Sally Ben-Moshe:  

As I ponder the past 6 months in this strange new world, I marvel at and am grateful for, the innovations in the technical field.

Let’s talk about Zoom in particular without getting “ausgezoomt”.

Zoom has enriched our family life and we are grateful to have it.

The first foray was in order to continue attending Shoshana Zucker’s classes in English. This was good for me. I began taking notes, which I had never done before. And I did not have to look for parking!

Then came the Zoom Seder. One of the best Seders we have ever had. We were 6 people on 3 screens. We all had the same food and Hagaddot. We blessed, drank, read, “took a break” for dinner and returned to finish the entire reading!

We even had my Mother in Florida “be” with us for a bit. Ah, the joys of modern technology, when it works!

Since then I have actively looked for events online. 

The first was a Zoom trivia quiz through ESRA. We were 64 computer screens divided into 9 teams. It was a blast.
Breakout rooms with strangers, sharing answers and trying to win. 

We had such a nice evening we looked for more.

Recently there was a Bingo night. Again, quite a lot of fun.
Again, with strangers. And, no, we did not win anything.
All in good fun.

Lest I forget, there were the 2 Zoom weddings we attended. Felt like we were there.
The photographers did not block our view and we were honored to be guests.

We raised a glass of delicious wine to the bride and groom each time.

Does all of this replace not being there? It certainly does not. But it does enable us all to improve the quality of our lives and causes us to reflect on what truly is important.

On the serious side was a three-part lecture/ semi-virtual tour leading up to Tisha B’Av through Beit Avi Chai.
Terrific guide, lots of detail and perfect timing for the Fast Day.

We also did go on a virtual tour of the Western Wall Tunnels, another ESRA activity. The historical and pictorial ground work made it evermore special.
No traffic, not hot and the ability to be with a lot of people without wearing masks.

Hod ve-Hadar adapted to the ever-changing Corona regulations and held the annual fundraising event on Zoom. Kudos to everyone involved.

It was heartwarming to witness deserving friends receive their recognition. And there was the semi-zoom AGM. I have returned to attending the Friday morning Parshat HaShavua class, now with hot coffee in hand. The list goes on…getting ausgezoomt.

September 2020