So that's it. The last stuff from the house and office were loaded up today. I gave a hug to whoever was around and said my goodbyes, and the truck headed down to unload at Beth Emeth and the house on St. George (yes, I know, a rabbi living on St. George. The cross streets are "St. Andrew's" and "St. Crispin's", so we can all fight for the Queen, Gawd Love 'er. I am, of course, kidding). It was a little teary. I'm surprisingly upbeat despite seeing my house disassembled and my life packed into boxes at breakneck speed. I did get a little sad disassembling the desk to curb, oddly, and I am sad to leave the garden Marisa and I planted (especially as it's just really starting to come into bloom now), but otherwise I'm very mellow. And tired. And something else I can't put my finger on (it might be nostalgia, but it's probably the caffine).
I do wish I had a ritual to have done today at the office to say goodbye. I had my formal goodbye service two weeks ago already, so something big would have been inappropriate, but it would have been nice to do a simple blessing; just a one liner as one does for putting up a mezzuzah (which is what we did as an office when I moved in). There isn't a blessing for taking down a mezuzah (at least that I know) and I was too crazed in the moment to come up with something fancy (excuses excuses I know), so I guess hugs and goodbyes will have to do.
I guess I just have a feeling I'm going to see a lot of the folks from Shir Ami again. In a different capacity, for sure; I'm not the rabbi of that congregation any more (well, at least as of July 1st), but I know the Jewish community is too small for us to not run into each other in Philly, at conventions, on Facebook or in some other venue. My dad is still in touch with people from his congregation in Gary Indiana, which he served for three years in the 70s, so I figure our paths will cross again.
Right now I'm in the Cosi in Newtown waiting for the boy to get out of school and the dog to be done at the groomers, and I'll bring 'em down the hour's drive to Wilmington. If you're around the Newtown area, feel free to stop by! If not, feel free to say hi in the comments space, especially those lurkers out there who have been reading but not commenting. Give a holler, yo!