Friday, March 26, 2010

la synagogue

UGH. So, I'm really, SUPER in love with Bright Eyes' I'm Wide Awake It's Morning, AND I'm in desperate need of new music, and I have an Amazon gift card from Christmas, so I was super excited to download another Bright Eyes album, BUT neither Amazon nor Amazon UK will let me use it because I'm not in the United States. Noooooooo. So sad.

But here are some images of life on Rue Naujac and around my city:

Joana & Ynel playing guitar before dinner.

Mmmm. Tofu cooking on the stove! I'm a big fan of tofu now, FYI.

Chat outside my window in the morning! Miiiiiiksuuuuu.

Finally it was nice enough outside for the water to be running!

The Port de Borgoyne, near the river.

St. Michel.

WAY cool wallpaper at St. Michel with my initials!

SUPER COOL and kind of creepy decoration on a house that I pass everyday on my way home. I don't know what the deal is, but the windows are boarded up and the curtains are thin and eerily tattered.

Also, I had an adventure today. One of the girls from the program and I decided to see if we could still sign up for the Seder that the mysteriously-looming-and-always-closed temple claimed to be holding, so I went over today to check it out. The temple itself was closed (until April 12, apparently?), but there just happened to be someone who worked there outside, who directed me to the temple offices, which I definitely WOULD NOT have found on my own since they were so unassuming. After passing through multiple security doors, I eventually made it into the office. I talked for those guys for a long time because of the language barrier, but they were really friendly and excited that I was from Los Angeles, I think. After putting my name on the list, the one in charge asked if I had been inside the temple (NO, duh. It's always CLOSED even though the website claims it's OPEN). So I got a magic guided tour on the spot!

It was really beautiful inside, and I also got a free History lesson! There's a wall inside with the names of people (just like every single French church EVER) who died during World War One. According to my guide, the reason that a lot of them had non-French-sounding names is because in 1492, when Isabel of Castille kicked all the Jews out of Spain ("and something something about Portugal") they ALL showed up to this part of town. Hence the Spanish and Portuagese Jewish names. But of course the French Jews didn't far too better either during World War II, when they were deported, and the Synagogue in Bordeaux was actually used as a prison for them by the Nazis. There's a BIG wooden gold-colored Menorah in the middle of the floor, but the original was apparently made of bronze and was melted down by the Nazis. He also told me something about how the inside of this temple was arranged differently than (many other ones?) because it used some Portugese traditions, but I didn't understand that part.

Then he took me to the kitchen, were he introduced me to this guy who looked like Santa Clause and who was making ground beef with his bare hands. His name sounded like the word "dove", and he was REALLY friendly. I was told he speaks eight langauges, and he told me in English that even though the first night seder was apparently closed, I could still show up and get in, and that I should, because he was Israeli and he only goes to the first night, and the first night is better anyway. So that's probably what my friend and I will do. Considering that I was really scared of just walking up to the temple and trying to get into something that I don't have any vocabulary for, and that it was technically too late to register for according to the website anyway, it ended up being a really fun and productive mini excursion. Success! Here's a picture of the inside of the temple that I didn't take:

So that's that. Also, I didn't say this before, but for those of you who don't know, I will officially be home MAY TWELFTH. So circle your calendars :)

No comments:

Post a Comment