Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Walk (07/20/06)
TITLE: What a mishemegillah!
By Julie Michaelson
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and could only see others if they were very close to her.
What was going on? Seran tried to listen to the discussion of the women standing
beside her, but there were so many of her neighbors about, talking in loud voices, she
couldn't hear very much. From all of the conversation, she gathered it was that
Man Who had everyone in town in an uproar. Some said that He was their Messiah,
and had come as the Son of God.
Seran lifted her head, squinted a little, and craned her neck. She sighed. At this
distance, she'd never be able to see anything! She bent down to collect her
basket. The sun was already high in the sky. She'd need to go back for the
noonday meal. Tomorrow was the Sabbath. She had preparations to make.
"Are you leaving, Seran?" Hiddath, one of the other women, turned to her
questioningly. "Yes. I may as well go. I have things to do. Mezur will be home.
I cannot see much, as it is." Seran hefted the basket, filled with bread, to one
side of her hip. The child in her womb shifted. Soon, it would be difficult to pick
up any basket at all.
"Ah!" Hiddath laughed quietly. "Well, then, you won't be here to meet the Man from
our village who calls Himself the Messiah! I don't think you would recall Him, Seran.
I do, although I was living in Nazareth long before you were born."
"Is it true? Has He come back home? Why is He going about spreading these lies?"
Seran rubbed the ball of her small palm against the growing pressure on her back.
This one was going to be a lively baby; of that, she was sure.
"None of us know, Seran. All I know is that the elders of the town are very angry
at Him. I don't think that He will be allowed in Nazareth much longer. How could
that nice family have raised someone like that?" Hiddath frowned, and made a
clucking noise. "Ah? And here you are, about to become a mother, yourself! You
and your husband are blessed. Stay away from this Man who calls Himself Messiah.
He would only bring trouble to you and your family, Seran!"
"Yes. I agree with you. Tomorrow, we shall most likely see our neighbors stoning
Him and all of His followers." Seran leaned forward, and gave Hiddath a light
kiss on the woman's leathery cheek. "Please stop by for our Sabbath meal! I have
made some special cakes! And, please give our greetings to your Ephram!"
Seran walked slowly through the town. As it crept up into the mid-morning sky,
the sun seemed determined to become hotter and hotter. For a moment, she
stopped on the dusty road to take a sip of cool water from her small jug.
Not so far from her, was the same group of men she had been trying to eye from
a distance. Delicately sipping from the rough jug, Seran kept her dark eyes trained
on the taller One of the group. All of a sudden the cool jug slipped from her tiny hand.
Had He looked her way? Seran's eyes were wide with fright. She sucked in a heavy
breath, and did not stop to retrieve the broken vessel. Uncomfortably, she
continued to make her way along the uneven road. She would not tell anyone of her
encounter. Fervently, she hoped that He and His men would leave Nazareth soon.
Surely, they had no place here among their own people.
Seran protectively, gently, flattened her palm against her swollen belly. Surely, no
child or grandchild of hers would ever hear about this Nazarene, whom they called
Jesus. How could they? In a very short time, He would be all but forgotten.
I cursed softly, fumbling blindly about for my glasses. Squinting, I stretched
a sleepy hand under my pillow. It was still early enough to stumble to my
computer, and do some writing. I sat yawning, and ruffling my tangled hair,
asking my Messiah Yeshua for some help. Recently, I had come to enjoy writing
about a wonderfully new, and rather unexpected relationship in my life. It was
a bittersweet walk together, considering the common threads of our ancestry.
Oy, vey es mir. What a mishemegillah!
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