Nancy Schess
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09.19.2023 (277 days ago)

Tashlich on the James

Tashlich on the James
277 days ago 6 comments Categories: Holidays Tags:

We have a new tradition – Rosh Hashanah in Lynchburg.    Why, you ask?  Because when the children can’t come to you, you go to the children – in time to make lots of brisket.


When my son shared on the day before our travels that he had not even scoped out a brisket to buy yet, I was nervous.  Here at home, I have my brisket in the freezer at least two weeks ahead, lest the store shelves turn empty.  My son assured me that I need not worry about brisket being fully stocked all over town.  He was quite correct.


During COVID we learned that services can be streamed and found a NYC congregation with a rabbi and tone we enjoy – and they sing the tunes the way we remember them which is always a plus for singing along.


At the end of the first day of the holiday, I was trying to figure out what we could do to celebrate a service that I particularly enjoy – Tashlich.  In this service, you literally cast your sins from the prior year into the water to start the new year clean and fresh.  But where could we find water in Lynchburg to improvise this service?


Eric to the rescue.  He was convinced that we would be able to get down to the shore of the James River so off we went, stale challah in hand to toss our sins away n the water.  He was a little concerned that we might get into trouble for littering so I have to admit that we did a little more acting than throwing. [I do have some pretty great fake action shots.]


We found a boat launch at the foot of the river that was the perfect location.  We climbed down to within an inch of the water, and I have to admit it was the most beautiful location from which I had ever participated in Tashlich service.  So, from that moment I started fresh with no sins.  I am pretty sure that lasted for as long as it took us to climb back up to the car, but it was good while it lasted.


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