Muizenberg

Muizenberg

The Perennial Holiday Favourite for SA Jews of All Ages By: Ilan Preskovsky Muizenberg Then Like no doubt many a Jewish Joburger, some of my fondest memories growing up in the ‘80s and ‘90s took place during summer holidays in a small coastal town just a few minutes’ drive from Cape Town. Muizenberg in December/January was exactly the sort of place in which indelible memories were created. I remember old, Cape-style houses in long, quiet streets surrounded by train tracks on the one side, the “Vlei” on the other, and,…

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Revisiting the past, changing the future

Revisiting the past, changing the future

The story of Ella Blumenthal By: Cathy Wilson Having been involved in Holocaust and Genocide education for many years, and after watching the many documentaries and seeing the same black and white photographs, there is a possible risk of becoming slightly desensitised. Before watching “I Am Here”, the film of the story of Ella Blumenthal, I did wonder why there was a need for another documentary – what new information could Jordy Shank as Director and Gabriella Blumberg as Producer possibly add? The answer became abundantly clear through my tear-filled…

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On the Up

On the Up

Making Aliyah an adventure By: Chandrea Serebro Dean and Shirley Cohen “As a young couple, we’ve always wanted to live in Israel. Both born to Israeli mothers (real sabras), we have always had a strong affiliation to the country. We travelled to Israel and were often reunited with close family and always felt that we truly belonged in Eretz Yisrael. So, the idea of settling one day in Israel wasn’t far-fetched. We went on to start our own family and found it increasingly difficult to contemplate leaving our families behind….

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Pesach pastimes

Pesach pastimes

A taste of the Seder around the world By Chandrea Serebro From Buenos Aires to Madrid and finding the way home Buenos Aires, known for its glamour and energy, saw its first Jewish community established in the mid-1800s and still today there is a strong Jewish community. Ayana (Natalia) Jazanovich was born and spent her formative years growing up in Buenos Aires. “My parents were children of European parents who left Europe before WW2 and although they grew up knowing they were Jewish and spoke Yiddish, there was no connection…

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Maror and trauma

Maror and trauma

How to digest trauma without letting it swallow us By: Paula Levin They say when life gives you lemons, you make lemonade – but what do you do with maror? Lemons are the small stresses and setbacks; the minor inconveniences, the bad luck, bad days, and bad moods that are part of ordinary, daily living. Maror is much more. It’s pain and suffering, loss and tragedy – the traumatic and catastrophic events that go far deeper, are far more bitter, and are much harder to swallow. What do we do…

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Spiritual suffocation

Spiritual suffocation

Getting to the heart of the matter By: Rabbi Dovid Samuels Happy new year! No, it’s not Rosh HaShanah; it’s Nisan, and we’re building up to Pesach. So, why the new year’s greetings? Rabbeinu Tam, one of our most famous medieval commentators, teaches us that the world really had two aspects of creation. In Tishrei, Rosh HaShanah marks the creation of the world ‘in thought’, and Nisan marks the creation of the world ‘in action’. Naturally, this concept is a complex one; as is any topic concerning the creation of…

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Ticket to Ride

Ticket to Ride

Valuing the celebration, and celebrating the value There was a story going around about a wealthy man in the United States who was waiting for a train in the Subway. As he was reading his newspaper, he became less and less aware of the painted line on the ground below him, and he ventured too close to the edge. As his toes folded over the edge of the pit, he lost his balance and fell in, hurting himself badly on the hard tracks. “Help! Help!” the man cried. He was…

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Defining a Generation

Defining a Generation

The Long-term Impact of COVID-19 on Today’s Youth By: Ilan Preskovsky It would be the height of chutzpah for someone like me, someone who is both unmarried and childless, to tell any parent that the COVID-19 pandemic has had a major impact on the lives of their adolescent or even pre-adolescent kids. So I won’t. I certainly wouldn’t dare to presume to explain to adolescents and children how Covid has affected them. No one needs me to spell out how challenging online school classes are or how disappointing it must…

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Life in the times of 2021…

Life in the times of 2021…

Lessons from our Matric students and their teachers’ By: Chandrea Serebro Hirsch Lyons Girls High School What Corona taught me about teachers… From singing good morning songs, to wearing a pirate hat whilst exhibiting a puppet show to present the lessons, my high school teachers had to become quite ‘creative’ to keep us students coming back to their lessons each day over the lockdown periods. From my experience of online school, I have seen teachers’ major evolution in their online teaching skills. Firstly, I have been privileged to witness teachers’ transition…

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Summer Salads

Summer Salads

By: Sharon Lurie Since I started making and selling salad dressings, my fridge has looked like a science project with every sized glass beaker and test tube available. Once you start making dressings, you don’t stop experimenting. Finally, after the thumbs-up from the ‘Lury Jury’ which now, Baruch Hashem, includes over 40 tasters, “Bobba Shar’s Heimishe dressing” made it onto the shelves and is available at most kosher outlets. Please G-d, next to join our condiments family will be a dark Thai-style dressing. The search for authentic dark ingredients was…

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Growing pains

Growing pains

Helping our teens grow into greatness By: Paula Levin Parenting teenagers is not for the fainthearted. It’s brutal, thankless, confusing, painful, scary, and often heartbreaking. My mother in law tried to warn me when my kids were little – “It’s not all coochi-coo.” Boy was she right! The worst part is that we’re flying blind. I don’t know about you, but I never got a manual, and I literally don’t know what I’m doing. Fortunately, as a writer, I get to research, explore, and investigate the world, and speak to…

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Staying Relevant

Staying Relevant

Lessons from our Matric students and their teachers’ By: Chandrea Serebro Hirsch Lyons Girls High School What Corona taught me about teachers… From singing good morning songs, to wearing a pirate hat whilst exhibiting a puppet show to present the lessons, my high school teachers had to become quite ‘creative’ to keep us students coming back to their lessons each day over the lockdown periods. From my experience of online school, I have seen teachers’ major evolution in their online teaching skills. Firstly, I have been privileged to witness teachers’ transition…

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Crucible and Cure

Crucible and Cure

How Purim paved the way for the children to return Rabbi Dovid Samuels It once happened, about 500 years ago, that Rav Yosef Karo[1] was learning a particularly difficult part of Torah. He struggled to make sense of a certain commentary and toiled the entire night to try and figure it out. At daybreak, he finally reached a deep and clear understanding, and his hard work had paid off. As he made his way to his shul that morning, he walked past a man sitting and learning that very same…

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