By Daniel Bloch, Executive Director, Cape SAJBD
Time flies when you’re having fun. We’re all familiar with this idiom signifying how much more quickly time moves when we’re having a good time.
Lately though — particularly in shul during the recent high holidays — I’ve been hearing a lot more of another popular refrain: “Where has the time gone?”
On Yom Kippur our rabbi spoke about ‘investing in time and not simply spending it’, and this got me thinking, What am I doing with MY time?
There’s still so much I want to do with my life. Being on the right side of 45, I’m cautiously optimistic that there’s (please G-d) enough time to do it all. To play for Manchester United, travel to the moon, eat a ridiculous dish from that crazy American TV series Man vs Food…
Daydreams aside, there are more realistic exploits I’d like to spend more time on.
Like travel. Top of my list: The Pyramids, the Statue of Liberty, the Berlin Wall, Mount Everest. My wife’s heart is set on Amsterdam, our son would happily swap a month of screen time for 24 hours at a Legoland theme park, and our daughter wants to cook alongside Gordon Ramsay at the MasterChef Junior studio. We all have dreams. When last did you take stock and ask yourself what yours are?
But let’s get back to my initial question — the one that everyone’s asking: “Where has the time gone?”
In January, our Board sat down and looked at one of our most critical recurring challenges — How to strengthen and future-proof our community.
We read countless articles and discussed the trend of Jewish people from around the world moving to the Western Cape. We interviewed several people and deliberated about how to get more Jews — particularly from Gauteng — to move here. Fast forward nine months and we’ve just hosted a Move Down to Cape Town Expo in Johannesburg. Read more about it and our Semigration campaign on pages 8 and 9.
But still, how did we get from January to November in the blink of an eye? Where HAS the time gone?!
We’ve launched great initiatives this year, but time has not always been on our side. With our Jewish New Year having just begun, and our regular year starting to wind down, it’s an opportune time to pause, reflect and plan ahead for the next twelve months.
Top of our agenda is the continued rollout of our Semigration initiative. We’re calling on community members to let us know of friends and family who have either recently relocated to the Cape, or who may be thinking of doing so. It’s all about reaching out and making meaningful connections.
Equally important is our continued engagement with families of Jewish students who attend the twenty-plus non-Jewish schools in the Western Cape. From Paarl to Table View, from Tokai to Rondebosch, we’ll leave no student behind.
When I decided on the title of this column — CONNECT, COLLABORATE, COMMUNITY — my goal was to do just that. It takes time to connect with everyone, to form partnerships and embark on collaborative projects to grow and strengthen our community. But it’s still my ultimate goal.
I may not make it to Manchester United or the moon, but Egypt and Mount Everest are still achievable — as are the dreams I have for this community. Rather than fretting over where the time has gone — or flown to while we’ve been having fun — I’m reassured by these quotable words by John W. Bergman, “There’s never enough time to do it right, but there’s always enough time to do it over”.
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