Wondering off the beaten path at the lake, I came across two distinct hut-like structures. I often wonder about those oddities that one finds in unexpected places.
Was it built to keep the heat of the sun off of the person who built it? Or, possibly it was built because rain was expected, and there was a homeless person/s living inside it, at one point. Maybe a family had a picnic and thought it would be fun to sit within a hut.
Speaking of huts, Sukkot, or the Feast of the Booths or Tabernacles, begins the evening of October 8th, and ends the evening of October 15th. It is one of Judaism’s Three Pilgrimage Festivals.
It is a season of harvest, and a season of remembrance. The Israelites dwelt in these types of temporary dwellings during their 40 years of journeying through the desert. Let us remember their hardships and obstacles that they forged through. Agricultural workers also dwelt in this type of temporary dwelling during harvest season.
Jews celebrate Sukkot by eating inside a sukkah (hut, tent) for eight days (seven in Israel). All meals are supposed to be taken inside of it. Read about its history, here.
The sukkah is built with four species of plants:
etrog (אתרוג) – the fruit of a citron tree
lulav (לולב) – a ripe, green, closed frond from a date palm tree
hadass (הדס) – boughs with leaves from the myrtle tree
aravah (ערבה) – branches with leaves from the willow tree
You can read more about the custom/s here.
The House on the Roof: A Sukkot Story, by David Adler, is a great children’s book. The story is a wonderful example of Jewish tradition versus religious tolerance, and it is based on an actual happening.