We land at Ben Gurion Airport in the heat of winter, on the first day of Chanukah. At 11 a.m. Dec. 2, already it is 82 degrees in Tel Aviv -- unusual weather for the rainy season in Israel. And it will get hotter. Much hotter.
My father understands unwinnable conflicts. He has been fighting a personal war against time since 1911. "Where does the time go?" he is likely even now to be wondering out loud to a stack of magazines and mail he has yet to get to, but will.
Before I entered the Chabad house in Mumbai, I thought, "What kind of people would leave a comfortable and secure life in a religious community to live in the middle of Mumbai; a dirty, difficult, crowded city?" As I got to know Rivky and Gabi over the course of this past summer, I understood that G-d creates some truly special people willing to devote their lives to bettering the world.
Next time you see someone like me at your synagogue or at your event, remember that they probably feel really lonely and you could be the person to make their day by smiling at them and letting them know that they exist.