Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Day of Erev Yom Kippur

I had a wonderful time today at the parent group. Last time several moms expressed interest in the wraps so I brought the two and the Ergo carrier to share. Some tried them on and looked at the book. It was nice for me to be able to share something. Later a few moms asked me about our diapers - go cloth!!!!

Anyway, when I arrived, I was one of the first moms there and had a chance to speak more with another mom. I learned some interesting things. One of which is that most babies are not named here until the first month. I laughed telling them that you can't leave the hospital without a name in the US! This mom told me that she, herself, wasn't named until she was 7 months old and her brother not until he was 9 months old. They wait until they are baptized to give a name. People name what they want, sometimes after family, sometimes what they like, much like the US. They are pretty surprised by Zelia's pierced ears, probably as much as some Americans but are interested to hear the story. Of course no one here circumcises either (from what I have seen).

The women were speaking a lot about the economic crisis and I was told that people are worried about their savings. They have already lost in the stock market. So I asked about their pensions and was told that the government said they want to be upfront with the people and there is a chance that their pensions will go down as well. Overall they are angry that about 30 men who control the banks have gotten them into this mess, and that now the government needs to try and fix ...hmmm sound familiar??? This one woman was frustrated because she feels this is such a small place and that people knew that the banks were investing too much in foreign currencies. She's angry that no one did anything and in general that people are still not doing/saying enough. The next elections are in 2011.

I asked if people are interested in the US elections, which honestly felt like a silly question after the economy. Why should they care about the US elections when their economy is going down the toilet??? Some people are interested and follow the debates, others not. I think in general people like Obama and think McCain is old. They are shocked by Palin and really don't understand how she could be governor let alone VP. They are shocked by what she doesn't know and the things that she says. Did she make a comment about Ireland having a King?

Next week a person from the Red Cross will be coming to teach us First Aid and we will start taking turns bringing food. I am on for next Wednesday and am thinking about making hummus and bringing pita bread...

Zelia is Miss Independent when we go, sometimes interested in toys, but mostly exploring the different structures in the place and wanting to stand holding on to them. At one point I left to go to the bathroom and she just crawled out of the room on her own. She had no idea I left and went out another door. The moms all step in to help with others' children which is nice, paying attention to monitors and handing out toys, holding babies that are crying, etc. I got a closer look at the monitors which are really great. You can set them to alert you if the temp gets too high or too low in the carriage - excellent.

I think by next week I will be able to get together with some of the moms on our own which will be very nice.

Oh, I taught pilates last night to about 7 people. It was a great success and hope to begin teaching twice a week. It was a lot of fun to get out and do it. Actually I need to call there now...

Terri is in Rejkyavik now and will be arriving at 5 pm-ish. Can't wait to show off this fabulous place!

It's hard to believe it will be Erev Yom Kippur - there is nothing here in our life to connect us to it, which feels weird. We did get a warm postcard from Maayan in Israel (our first truly personal mail) that was a nice reminder. Rosh Hashanah was easier because it feels normal to share it with other people, Yom Kippur without a community and without a synagogue is a challenge, especially since that's where it really takes place. Cherie Fox sent me a meditation for those who don't fast. I will take a look at it and am sure it will be meaningful - her thoughts always are. Well to those who are, tzom kal and gmar hatimah tova! (Have an easy fast and a good signing)