Well today was one of the most inspirational days I’ve spent in Yeoville.
Rofhi and I got the opportunity to meet with some of the Nigerian Jewish community members and got to experience a few of their prayer rituals and photograph them while in their religious garb. They had prayer shawls, religious books, tzit-tzit (don’t ask me to translate that) and smart clothes. (Yarmulke’s are worn 24/7 by the religious members of the community).
They prayed beautiful and I must say there were a lot of similarities to the way in which the Orthodox community pray. They ended off by chanting “Adon Olam” in English which means “Master of the University” and is traditionally recited in the Synagogue at the end of a prayer service.
Afterwards, I met with one of the women elders (or Rebbetzin’s) in the community who explained her role as a Jewish woman and a Jewish wife. It was incredible to hear her viewpoints from a similar but mildly different perspective.
“The Jewish woman’s role is to bring peace to the house, raise the children in the ways of Hashem and look after her husband. This is not to say she cannot or should not immerse herself in the working world. She can do both but family must always come first.” She said.
It gave me a bit of a spiritual rejuvenation and made me think: If they can be so strong in their faith in Judaism and God, how much more so should I be?
The Igbo Jews are fantastic. I’m glad to have them as apart of the “tribe” and “family”.
Following my wonderful morning we met up with Bongi and headed off to meet her interviewees. Both were interesting (and a little dodgy) rappers. We went on a trek to find a quiet park to film and ended up walking into the middle of Observatory. We found a lovely park with swings and while Bongi did her thing, Rofhi and I decided to find our inner child, (which we did!) on the swings. It was a nice change for a change.
We trekked back to Yeoville and by 2.30pm we were once again heading back on a Taxi (I’m use to it now!) to Wits. Our driver was mildly crazy and took a few chances. I was nearly ready to kiss the ground after we arrived back safely.
A lovely day was had by all – with quite a few laughs along the way. But I must say – I am exhausted!
Tune in tomorrow where I will be looking to locate old photos of Yeoville’s Jewish community for my video.