A 3 day trip, 5–8 of January to Philadelphia combining the Nth anniversary of our encounter there, as graduate students on the U. Penn Campus, with Ben Franklin’s tercentenary. After 6 hours on the train we got to see how much West Phily, the campus, & esp. Alan’s Wharton School, have changed since the graduate student days! The next 6 months must have been just hard work, no trips, no fun!
The Hizby war on Haifa, my hometown, glued us to TV & endless phones to relatives & friends in Haifa; it even led us to do a Haifa website seeking to convey the banality of rocketing the most beautiful town in the Middle East, a rare site of peaceful co-existence between Arabs & Jews; and of global responses to that still unaccountable for war on civilians. A lot remains to be said on what happened in Haifa.
A 2 week trip to England & Israel, to speak at a BSHS conference at Imperial College, London, & continue with my archives in Oxford & Cambridge; less eventful than July 2005 when the subway bombings rarified my trips to London. In Haifa I was privileged to hear first hand how my relatives & friends survived, in so many ways, a whole month of daily rocketing; also to daily walk the entire length of Carmel Beach (4km) with a Haifay cousin who then recovered from his 3rd surgery in 2 years. (someone up there must like him, and so do I)
Three cousins enlivened the High Holidays with CDs from trips to South America; Alan’s birthday, (Oct. 15) was celebrated in Las Vegas (top-left photo), grace to a conference, (SHOT); enfin we saw the Beattles show of Cirque du Soleil at Le Mirage; Estee’s birthday, (Oct. 22) was celebrated at the Regatta (boat race) on Charles River (at the peak of the foliage), 10 minutes from our house (middle two photos); Halloween, (Oct. 31), 30 kids rang our house in delightful costumes (right photo).
After a nice Thanksgiving Day (the greatest American feast celebrating the encounter with Amerindians) bad news began to reach us: Linda-Marie of Orinda, CA. a delightful person & travel writer who helped us during my time as visiting faculty at UC-Berkeley, was lost to neck cancer; Esther Lederberg, of Stanford California, a pioneer of microbial genetics who spoke to my students in her late 70s, died of heart failure at 83. She remains a role model to women in science. Blessed be their memory!
Hanuka—the festival of lights—was darkened by a friend’s diagnosis with lung cancer; I try to suggest how best to cope esp. since I saw recovery in a cousin. Equinox Day (Dec. 22) brought the good news of a grant, so next drinks on me! Estee got good grades (junior at Brandeis) and found a winter vacation job that she likes.
I am awaiting Nancy’s, in particular, since no one can beat her trips all over the world, or diverse extended family!