As you may have read, my friends Shlomo Leib Goldman and Tom Yahel, whilst roving in Upstate New York, met a man whose mother lives in an old age home in Jacksonville, FL. They told him that they would pass on her information to me, since I would be roving in the Jacksonville region.

Now we are here in Jacksonville and decided to go to visit her.

Upon entering the home, two nice old ladies stopped us and asked who we were. They were a lot of fun to speak to. One gave us her bingo winnings to pass on to charity and harangued the other to do the same. (It is hard to convince people that we are truly not collecting money). She then asked us if we were part of Chabad, and told us that Chabad rabbis helped her when her husband passed away and that her daughter is very involved with Chabad in California. They also told us that many of the women in this home go to Shabbat services and light Shabbat candles together.

We then passed by the cafeteria, from where we heard various people telling each other, "The chassidim have come." We went inside and found the woman we were looking for, the mother of the man our friends had met in New York. When I mentioned that I had also spent time in Monticello, ladies from all corners of the room started screaming that they too were from Monticello. One told us that her father was very religious and the pride of the synagogue.

I told them that last Sukkot I had interned in Monticello's Landfield Avenue Synagogue where Rabbi Chanowitz is the rabbi. One lady said, "We were big donors there, one room is named after me, and my husband's name is on the wall." She then told me that her son still lives there and has since become disconnected from the community. Now, I guess this time we will be giving our friends up north someone to visit!

As you can see, we had a blast!
As you can see, we had a blast!