As readers who follow this blog know we spent Chanukah in the US. Below is a picutre of our son-in-law lighting candles at David's parents home in Philadelphia. It was a very happy visit and we had a nice chacne to visit with most of our family in New Jersey and New York as well.
December in the US is an interesting time to visit. When I lived there I found it a difficult time of year.
Some of my earlies memories are of learning the difference between us and them. Most of the time it didn't matter. But those few weeks, after the inclusive all-American holiday of Thanksgiving came those weeks of Santas, evergreens and in the very Christian neighborhood where I grew up, nativity scenes. It wasn't a hostile atmosphere and of course I never had to associate it with hiding from marauding Cossaks, as my grandparents did. I never heard an anti-Semitic remark from any of our neighbors. We had warm relations with most of our neighbors. Chanukah did come just at the right time for us to get presents and not have to feel jealous. I only wished I could really be mainstream, in sync with the culture around me. That's why I feel so good here in Israel. Now, I can enjoy a trip to Manhattan to delight in the lovely (if commercial) holiday sights.
Snowy Street in New Jersey
The Deck & The Woods
Across Central Park at 81st Street
The View from Starbucks
And for balance, here is the Lubavitchly billed "World's Largest Menorah at 59th St. & Fifth Avenue!