Sunday, October 11, 2009
Pigeons Are Back And Baby's Coming Home
tomorrow is the big day! my son and wife are coming home with the new baby. sephardi women go back to their mamas after birth for about a month. in this case there were 7 siblings and a set of grandparents doting on this new arrival 24/7. every coo and sound and poop from baby produced a riotous applause. first time he nursed was to standing room only. the first diaper change got a standing ovation. this of course, is the total opposite of the ashkenazi approach. the ashkenazi mom will shlepp over to the daughter with a pot of chicken soup and some cake, gather the laundry, do the dishes and tidy up a bit and then leave them alone to bond and rest. not so with the sephardi family. the new mother here is basically a wet nurse. the safta determines when the baby eats, how many layers of clothing to put on and actually bathes the baby and puts him to sleep. *in this case she was the only one with enough courage to bathe the newborn. the siblings all helped to change diapers and virtually held the baby all day long . the new father (my son) and the ashkenazi safta (me) had to stand in line for our turn to hold the baby. but in all fairness, the sephardi safta sat up all night with the crying baby. anyway, tomorrow is a big day. i went upstairs to check out the apartment for them and when i stepped outside i saw the enormous mess that the pigeons had once again left. i have tried almost everything. a few years ago i sprayed "oof me po "all over the wooden porch. this is a rather sticky substance that the friendly flower store man recommended. well to this day the wooden boards are still sticky but the dreaded pigeons keep on coming back. next i tried plastic snakes. this actually worked for a year and then they returned. pigeons are slow learners. then we tried shiny cd's. this worked for a year and then they returned. then i put up plastic green netting and that seemed to deter them for awhile but i guess after a month's absence they figured that the humans moved out and they returned. so now i have to go back upstairs and clean the pigeon poo. i also have to vacuum and wash the wooden floors and do laundry and do the yom tov/shabbat dishes that are still sitting in my sink, unrinsed. and i guess my apartment could use a sponger too. and i really should run to the supermarket and buy groceries and fill up their fridge with the usual staples. and then the succah is still standing downstairs and needs to be taken apart. but first i need to take off the dozens of plastic fruit decorations that took 3 hours to put up. and here i am on the blog typing away and it's already 4:00pm and i haven't done mincha or today's portion of tehillim. and soon the Days of our Lives will be on and of course i can't miss that. and i'm still recovering from the vodka that i drank in shul yesterday morning. and it's a heat wave here in zefat and i'm hot and tired and stuffed from finishing the chocolate jewish stars and other religious shapes that i made from my collection of chocolate molds. i kind of got mixed up this holiday and made chocolate sefer torahs and ten commandments. i also made a 10 commandments coconut cake with chocolate letters. it wasn't until i was home from shul that i realized that the ten commandments was read on shavuot and not simchat torah. i'm kind of out of the loop these days. you know who's also back? the rats. yes, this summer i have caught about 8 rats downstairs. these are in no way like the super rats in N.Y.C. they are little creatures similar in size to mice but they're grey and have very long tails and carry the bubonic plague. i was in the local hardware shop in town buying traps when i heard from a new arrival to zefat that there is a rat rav whose picture sends them scurrying out of the place. i even heard the miraculous story during the second lebanon war about a rat that was about to enter the bomb shelter and saw the said picture of the rav and turned and ran away. so i went to all the religious articles stores in town and asked if they had a picture of the famous rav whose picture and bracha insures the yidden's homes to be rat free. no one knew the name of this rav. my friend michal, the computer maven, found me the picture.it turns out that the rav was from europe. i put up the copied picture of the rav but i cut off the article about him and i have to admit that it hasn't worked. i couldn't read the name very well .i think it might be kristirer. perhaps one of my readers can advise me. i am by all means not trying to be sacreligious. i'm just being truthful about the rats. my tenants this summer were quite cool with it. the first night they arrived from the U.S. a small fuzzy, grey little creature seemed to run circles around them in the salon. i had prewarned the wife that i had caught a little friend the night before. i set up the traps and told them to let me know if they heard anything. well at 11:00pm i had a knock on the door to let me know that they indeed, had a little friend downstairs. the rat was trying to befriend them which is very unrat like. we never did catch him. am i the only one who has been invaded this summer with pigeons and rats? i still haven't even thought about how i am going to deal with my two little dogs when baby grandson comes home tomorrow. to be continued......oh wow the Days of Are Lives is on!