Crazy…Beautiful

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I saw her from a distance. The well-dressed, cool, and comfy-looking thirty-something, taking her morning walk. Fit and trim, and willingly out walking on a hot day. I see her kind a lot on my walk by the lake—often pushing a stroller or walking with an equally smartly-dressed friend. But she was alone.

As she approached the footbridge, I noticed she held a wine glass by the bulb, shielding its contents…Well, good for her! Hey, enjoy a drink by the water—it’s 5:00 pm somewhere, right?

As I got close enough to pass her, I saw that, in fact, the glass was empty. Then, just as I marched by, huffing and puffing to the beat of the music in my ears, I saw her crouch down, mutter a few words to herself, dip the glass all the way into the lake’s rushing water, and then stand up and shake it off with a look of peaceful satisfaction.

These ever-flowing waters remind us of Hashem’s eternal life force; infusing a spark of spirituality that lives in us and in our otherwise uninspired daily acts. 

We shared a fleeting knowing glance as I passed, and then we went our separate ways. 

Not wanting to expose herself to possible Covid-19 germs at a public mikvah, she had come to do the mitzvah of tevilas keilim at Lake Carasaljo. 

I don’t know her or anything about her, but I know she understands that, as observant Jews, we elevate our dining tables to be like the Mizbeach. We raise the mundane act of eating to the realm of holiness with kosher food, before and after brachos, and, yes, dishes and utensils which have been immersed in natural bodies of water. These ever-flowing waters remind us of Hashem’s eternal life force; infusing a spark of spirituality that lives in us and in our otherwise uninspired daily acts. 

She, like me, goes through life trying her best to dignify the level of her day’s simplest moments, so that they can become tiny opportunities for spiritual connection. 

Having already passed her, I then noticed a middle-aged man in overalls holding his fishing line and bucket, who was staring at the young woman with what seemed like an expression of something between disbelief and wary confusion. I could almost hear the word in his head: “Crazy…”

But the word in my head drowned it out:

“Beautiful.”

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Malka Leah Josephs
Malka Leah Josephs, as founding director of Creative Communications for over ten years, Malka Leah Josephs is a writer and lyricist, as well as a director and producer of innovative films, music videos and marketing materials for both the Jewish and secular world. Her acclaimed live productions have been performed at Lincoln Center, New York City, and The Orpheum Theater of downtown Los Angeles. A veteran teacher and school administrator for the previous decade, Malka Leah leverages her education background to create unique, entertaining and educational productions that lean toward the inspirational, musical, and laugh-out-loud funny. Malka Leah is also a professional birth doula, a wife, mother of seven fabulous humans, a grandmother, and a grateful contributor to Nashim Magazine!

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