The “Days of Awe” have passed and Sukkot is here. Beyond their religious significance, these appointed times in the city are known for novelty and inconvenience; prices go up, streets fill with more than the usual number of international visitors and the rowdiness of Sukkot stands in spectacular contrast beside the profound silence of Yom Kippur preceding it. We live on a busy street in a breezy, sunlit apartment but without air-conditioning and so, through our always-open windows we are accustomed to the sounds of rumbling traffic, barking dogs, shouting pedestrians and noisy kids.
On the morning of Yom Kippur we awoke to absolute silence save the occasional tweeting of birds. We could have been camping in a wilderness.
In some ways, we were.