Monday, 7 November 2016

Middlesex New Synagogue

I got back from Lewes at 4am yesterday morning, so the day was something of a wipe out. I slept in until 11, and then simply stared at the television, wrapped in a blanket, trying to work out why the temperatures had plummeted so thoroughly and why I felt like I'd been boxed by a kangaroo. 

I helped out at another quiz in the evening. As I left the house, I took a tumble down the stairs leading down into the garden. The motion-sensor light has broken, and, in all the darkness, I misjudged where the first step was. Fortunately, I caught the railing and prevented myself from a full on fall, but felt quite shaken afterwards at the thought of what might have been. There are at least twenty steps. 

The quiz took place at the Middlesex New Synagogue in Harrow and I was fairly shocked by the amount of security outside. Great big locked metal gates. I simply can't imagine that happening outside a church, and find it thoroughly unacceptable that the Jewish community in our country feel so threatened. 

The event was utterly charming. It was a charity fundraiser and there were plates and bowls of delicious home made food. There were baskets of tangerines, boxes of chocolate, salads, poached salmon, pickles and the most amazing cucumber slices prepared with salt, sugar, vinegar and dill. They were so delicious that I asked the lady who'd made them for the recipe. When I announced that I was a vegetarian, the salmon was whipped away and replaced with a mushroom flan.

I hope we gave them a good quiz. It felt somehow really important to do so. They were such a lovely bunch of people and made us feel utterly at home. I looked around the tables as people tucked into their meals and wondered how anyone on earth could want to make the people in that building feel the need to barricade themselves inside whilst worshipping. I should point out that Reform Judaism is one of the only official British religions which condones gay marriage. I always feel incredibly at home in a reform synagogue.

I came home, late, and managed to watch a tiny bit of telly with Nathan, who'd been at a yarn festival all day. We're like ships in the night at the moment.

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