I experienced something that not many people have: I spent the holidays in Israel during a pandemic.
I am so glad I was in Israel during the chagim! Although the country is on lockdown, I experienced something that not many people have: I spent the holidays in Israel during a pandemic. On Yom Kippur, we went for an evening walk. There were no cars on the roads due to the holidays, so we sat in the middle of an active but empty intersection. It was incredible to see different kinds of people walking all over the empty streets. We could see a wide range of ultra orthodox Jews and Reform Jews. I thought it was amazing to see all the people as a community walking together on the holiday. Being away from home, especially during the holidays seemed like it was going to be hard, but now being here, I feel so welcomed and at home. This life changing experience I had, walking in the middle of the street with the Hod Hasharon community made me feel so special. My Yom Kippur was the most meaningful it has ever been and inspired me to start new traditions similar to this one when I return home.