It was already late afternoon in the Rio Grande Valley when we were told of a Jew living in rural Mission, Texas.

Stanley Jacobson was his name and he was located a short 25 minutes away. We contacted Stanley and asked if we could come by for a short visit. Stanley was delighted to hear from us and invited us to his orchard where he was out working.

We arrived at Stanley's 40-acre orange-and-grapefruit orchard just as the sun was setting. We found Stanley working on some of his farming equipment and we introduced ourselves. Being that it was just minutes to sunset we asked if he would like to do the mitzvah of tefillin.

Stanley agreed, on condition that we guide him through the process as he was unfamiliar. As we soon discovered, Stanley had not had a bar mitzvah. We promptly turned the evening into an orchard-themed outdoor bar mitzvah and Stanley put on tefillin for the first time in his life. Afterwards he brought out a small music box he had in his work shed which played a Jewish tune, and we danced in celebration of the bar mitzvah.

Our new-found friend gave us a quick tour of the orchard, complete with some fresh ripe grapefruit, which we enjoyed together.

No bar mitzvah is complete without refreshments and L'chaim, and we insisted Stanley come along with us to celebrate this special occasion. We toasted L'chaim and Stanley committed to continue doing mitzvahs, including putting on tefillin again in the near future.