Skip to content

102 (FF: Gift | FF:贈り物)

March 18, 2011

Nomi's homemade cookies | Nomiの手作りのクッキー

Food Fridays: Gift

“I was hoping to bake Purim cookies for you but couldn’t get around to it this week, so please have these instead,” said Nomi, one of my favorite people in the kibbutz (and also my Hebrew tutor), as she thrust a plastic case full of homemade cookies in to my hands. Purim is a celebratory Jewish holiday occurring this weekend. Since yesterday I’ve started to see many children and adults in costume. The Purim cookies Nomi was talking about are the triangular hamantash (Wikipedia link) cookies. I started seeing these in stores and supermarkets from about a month ago.

Nomi baked me a honey cake for me last September for the Jewish New Year. It was the first gift I received since I came to Israel, a handmade cake specifically made for me. I remember how heartwarming it was, how deeply touched I was. Since then, Nomi has baked something for me for nearly every holiday. Always saying something like, “I’m baking up a storm because my daughters are coming with their kids… so I made something for you too.”

And each time I savor her treats, every bite sweetening both my taste buds and my heart .
I hope I can become good enough in the kitchen to give a heartwarming gift one day too.




・ ・ ・ ・ ・

A whole week has passed since the earthquake in Japan.
Now when I think back in time, I find myself thinking in terms of “before” or “after” the earthquake.
My daily life has not been affected much, but my mindset certainly has been.
I still have a hard time believing that such an event that clearly marks a “before” and “after” has occurred.

I spoke to a Japanese friend on the phone who lives in a nearby kibbutz the other day.
Her parents live in Aomori, and she was finally able to reach them 6 days after the earthquake. That must have been a long 6 days.
She told me her husband had been getting many compliments of awe towards the Japanese at work. The fact that despite not having access to food, water, electricity, or gas, hardly anyone panics or throws a fit. Or after seeing footage of long lines outside a supermarket, someone said, “The fact that they are even lining up is unbelievable.” Or how the unfortunate person being told the store had sold out everything right when she got up to the front of the line doesn’t even complain. Unthinkable.

I’ve also seen many acts of kindness on NHK (live streaming). Earthquake victims volunteering at evacuation centers. A public bath opening its doors to victims free of charge. A gasoline stand owner going around evacuation centers and giving out gasoline for free. There are probably many, many other unreported acts of kindness, happening all the time. I know it.
Kindness like these as well as their solidarity is what makes me proud to be Japanese and are the true strength and beauty of the Japanese people. I pray from the bottom of my heart that these kinds of goodness and strength will help Japan get through this extremely difficult time.



Much love,

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Sammi Moe permalink
    March 20, 2011 6:14 pm

    Hi Kaori! Just checking in to see what you have to say today. I am glad that the food Friday is there. Made things seem somewhat normal again. Although the people in Japan will not see normal for a long time, and the “before” and “after” will now mark time, I am glad you are safe. I hope things are still OK for your family. How is Hibiki and family? Please let them know we are thinking of all of them. I am proud of the way the people are helping each other too. If only the whole world could be so! Happy Purim!
    Sammi and family

    • March 21, 2011 4:24 pm

      Hi Sammi! Hibiki’s family is okay too. I will let them know! 🙂
      Thanks always xx


  1. 114 (First conversation | 最初の会話) « much love, kaori – letters from Israel

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: