Jerusalem: 7:45 p.m.
I laid my forehead against the exposed stone wall of the Kotel and wept.
Known throughout the Jewish world as the holiest remains from the Roman destruction of the Second Temple thousands of years ago, I hadn’t visited the Wall since my last trip to Israel in 1985.
Life was different 22 years ago, but in particular I was at the Wall with Dad. I don’t remember much of that 1985 trip, but I do remember seeing the Wall, witnessing the Orthodox men reciting silent prayers, and stuffing notes of paper into the stone crevices.
I remember writing something all those years ago and stuffing it in the crevice. Somewhere, I am sure the weather of time kept my scrawled note.
I wrote a new note tonight, in the hours before sunrise and the beginning of Shabbat. I pushed my finger, holding the note, into a crevice with other notes from other Jews from around the world.
I cried, thinking of Dad and all the other people from my life who have died over the past 22 years. I stood there, motionless, for what seemed like many minutes.
Four days ago, as we landed in Tel Aviv, my Bostonian friends and me were told that sometime during our trip we would feel Israel calling us, we would feel something profound. I heard God’s cries…and I joined in the tears.