It’s feast season again for the Hebrews and other Torah Observers of the world.
And it’s raining today. And when it rains in the fall, and it is chilly and muddy, all I can think of is Sukkot.
Man. There were a lot of things wrong with the assembly we built up back in the day. A lot of things, which is why so many of us left and now the assembly is pretty much defunct.
But one thing I can say about us is that, when we would observe the feasts, we would REALLY observe those feasts!
At first we would buy lamb chops. Then the next year we made sure it was from a kosher store. Then the next year (because the butchers in the kosher store would give it to those they knew were Jews first and then tell the rest of us they had none. It’s understandable to protect and assist your own FIRST, but that doesn’t mean I have to continue to shop there…) we felt we were better off if we bought a lamb and slaughtered it ourselves.
My husband and Marcus and Gene and Paul would get together and bless the lamb, and my husband would perform the ritual slaughter. He had a super-sharp knife that they’d blessed, and he would cut the throat almost to the back, and then allow the blood to drain out from the lamb’s body.
My children would play with “Sheepie” for the week or so before he was to be slaughtered; sometimes it was a “petting zoo” atmosphere, as friends (we’re all “city folk”, or “hood folk”, and are simply not used to seeing a farm animal in someone’s backyard just chilling like that, lol) would bring their children to see the lamb and pet it.
After a couple of years of doing that, Cedric started joining us, and even when he moved to NYC, he would make an effort to come down for Passover.
As for Sukkot, at first it was a backyard thing, then when we finally split up (at that point we were split in two, for the most part – WE left, and then Marcus left, and Cedric came with us because he was OUR friend), we finally started doing it out in the openness of wooded land over near Joe Pool Lake.
Every year we have sukkot, it rains on us, whether we are in someone’s backyard or near the lake.
It rains and some people’s tents get flooded.
It rains and your feet or wet in your shoes all the time.
It rains and the hem of your skirt is consistently moist and muddy.
So you’re cold all the time, even tho you’ve got on long-johns and a hoodie.

We could hear coyotes and owls hooting in the night… my mother in law came with us once and she and my daughter shared a tent while my then-toddler son and even younger then-baby son shared the tent with my husband and I.
One night it rained sooo badly that when I got up to use the restroom (aheheh, a bucket that in the morning you need to take it out and pour it deep in the woods and then go clean it out), the floor of our tent was like walking on a waterbed mattress!! All waves and such.
I remember one year, the single women’s tent was so flooded all their blankets and pillows had to be hung over fences all the next day, and they had to take their clothes to be washed.
But FORGET all the discomfort – it’s STILL a wonderfully blessed time.
It’s as if the discomfort is GOOD for you.

We are definitely city/hood people. But there was no complaining among us. We TRIED, we tried our bests to observe the feasts! Everynight there was a lesson, every night there was food cooked by some set of women or some family or some group of men. Every day people were cleaning, or off showering somewhere – some of us that had jobs would gone on and go to work if they were unable to spend the entire feast at the campsites. We would bible study ALL DAY LONG, we would discuss bible all day, all night.
There were courtings, night time flirting (by cell phone – one young sister in the single sisters’ tent, texting back and forth with a young brother in the single brothers’ tent). There were slightly quiet, night time games of volley ball where people were REALLY competitive, oh my, my my lol. There were even GHOST stories – because scriptures don’t say they don’t exist, they say don’t TALK to them. So A LOT of people have those unexplained stories and you know the campsite is the best place to do that…
One year we got together with a bunch of other groups and had sukkot, and we met some really nice/interesting people, who “knew how to make fire” lol (oh my goodness so many city folk are gonna be SCREWED when the SHTF!) and they made this bonfire and my husband and them (he’s from an island, he can do stuff many city/hood guys can’t lol) would go into the woods, cut some wood and then bring it back and toss it on the bonfire and we just sat around having discussions and such.

Now, it’s just us, our little family…and it used to be Marcus with us, but now he’s married (HE WHO FINDS A WIFE FINDETH A GOOD THING!). And we’re trying to move out of town… and others have completely just fallen away, haven’t even done a Shabbat in a couple of years…
it makes me sad. And when I see signs of the feasts, American-style, Texas-style, lol, Dallas-style…I get all nostalgic, like now. When I see that big moon in the sky, I get all wistful and memories pop up. I’m not afraid of a little rain anymore; I go where I want in the rain. I don’t even need an umbrella anymore lol.
I miss it.
It seems the poison that seeped up (really it was there from the get-go but when things are allowed to fester…you know…they decay and the healthy parts must break away) is out and away for the most part.
It would be NICE to be able to all come BACK, RETURN, TESHUVAH/TESHUBAH and do it AGAIN, like the old days.
We’d gotten really good at it.
We learned A LOT about the world, and the Word of The Most High. Every year it was a test on how we would survive, should something horrible happen to our society at some point.
People learned to make fire. People learned that a little rain ain’t TOO bad, when you know how to keep warm. People learned how to slaughter and gut an animal, if need be. People learned how to get along with others that they would otherwise NOT be living with.
I miss it. And no matter what anyone can say, I refuse to allow the poison disrupt the GOOD memories I have of us, and what we were…

Alright I’m done. YHWH bless, have a good feasttime!