The Jewish High Holidays– Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur – come every fall, moving around the months of September and October depending on the lunar calendar. It’s a chance to start over, to review your life in excruciating detail, find the areas that need extra effort and promise to work harder in the coming year. But unlike my other ‘do-over opportunities’, my March birthday and the raucous end of December’s New Year’s Eve, Jews around the world admit their faults in community in the synagogue. Somehow it's less painful with friends and family around you.
On Rosh Hashanah you wish everyone a sweet year and dip apples in honey. On Yom Kippur you ask God and your fellow humans for forgiveness. You ask to be inscribed for another year in the Book of Life. Who shall live and who shall die…not exactly a happy, frivolous moment but in a city that doesn’t know intense seasons, it’s good to have a smack upside the head to remember the passing of time.