I love wearing sneakers on Yom Kippur. I don’t wear my running shoes or anything with leather uppers, so by the end of the day (assuming I’ve been on my feet in synagogue, which hasn’t happened in many a year but whatever) they’re feeling a little sore, but having a valid reason to wear socks and comfortable shoes gets two thumbs up in my book. Fancy shoes with heels and pointy toes and shiny accoutrements make me miserable.
Miss M came home from gan on Friday with a sheet explaining the restrictions of Yom Kippur (not applicable to one at the tender age of five, though not wearing leather shoes is pretty much doable for anyone) and was in tears at the thought of having to wear her slippers in public. Taxman and I tried not to laugh as we explained that she could wear her [faux] crocs because they’re made out of plastic. “Ok,” she sniffed.
Actually, if she were cunning she’d agitate to wear her shiny pink plastic dress up heels outside of the house–normally not allowed, because a) they clatter like you wouldn’t believe and b) every once in a while she still falls down even wearing normal shoes.
Maybe when she’s six she’ll figure it out. In the meantime, we will have to figure out how to explain that Yom Kippur around here will look like a giant block party. Our neighborhood is probably 15-20% religious, which means that the majority of people will not be in synagogue tomorrow evening but rather in the streets, riding bikes and hanging out. Public bus and train service, which always shut down for Shabbat, are joined by air travel (the Tel Aviv airport closes for 33 hours) and any kind of car-based transport (except for emergency services) as unavailable to the general public on Yom Kippur. (Read: it is not legal to drive or be driven on Yom Kippur. I have no idea how enforceable this is.)
Of course, at five, the gravitas of Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur, explained at gan in Hebrew over the past two weeks, has not seemed to make much of an impact. I can’t say that I’m sorry about that; once she figures it out, she’ll have her whole life to grapple with it.