Last week, on Lag Ba’omer, the Hilula of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai, all the various authorities worked feverishly to enable the masses of Jews to come to Meron safely for the traditional prayers at the gravesite of Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai.
In spite of the complex logistics involved in handling the hundreds of thousands converging in a small area within a 24-hour period, traffic moved smoothly most of the day. In order to reduce the crush on the roads, only public transportation vehicles were allowed in to the area for the course of the Hilula.
This year once again, Ezer Mizion was assigned full responsibility to transport the handicapped and mobility impaired population to the gravesite. People with valid handicapped I.D. cards came to the Parod parking lot via the Sheva intersection, where Ezer Mizion ambulances, manned by courteous, experienced drivers, were waiting to shuttle them all the way up to the site.
Each year, more and more mobility-impaired individuals allow themselves to make the trip on Lag Ba’omer, thanks to Ezer Mizion’s special transport service, carried out by dedicated drivers with genuine concern for their passengers’ welfare.
“Books are great,” says Matityahu Kreitman, “but I wanted to get a feel for the real thing. I’m a pre-med student and, of course, I have tons of material to learn but I was anxious to develop a real understanding of the patient and, for that, I needed real patients.”
My chance came in the summer, a perfect time to fulfill my ‘volunteer hours’. I chose Ezer Mizion’s Ambulance Division. They provide transportation for the elderly and the disabled. It’s hard for me, a young guy, to imagine. When I want to go somewhere, I just go. It’s hard to get my head around the concept of someone not being capable of getting where he has to be. Continue reading Books Are Great but…
From the thoughts of Avi Sorias, an ambulance driver for Ezer Mizion
“Here,” says the young man from behind me. “At the right.”
From my place at the steering wheel, I glance at his image in the mirror. He sits there, limp and helpless, his head dropped back against the seat. His voice is soft, almost a whisper.
The vehicle, a modern Ezer Mizion ambulance, pulls up by a tall building. “Are you okay?” I ask the closed eyes behind me.
The young man, shaken, sharply pulls himself up in his seat, plastering a care-free smile on his gaunt face. “No,” he replies seriously, “but only you and I have to know that.”
He thanks me profusely for the ride, takes a deep breath, and steps out to the broad sidewalk.
The street is humming with people at this midday hour: Children are coming home from school, cheery preschoolers prance along with their colorful backpacks, busy parents rush along their way. A cat darts out from between the cars, startling a high-school girl leisurely walking home.
The young man continues along the path to the building. He stops a moment and glances at a large public bulletin board displaying freshly-pasted death notices announcing the demise of a special member of the community.
He scans it silently. I watch him and feel a stab of sadness, painfully aware of the thoughts running through his mind.
“He is so young,” I think to myself. “He has four little children at home. And so very little stands between him and a notice just like this one!” Continue reading The Other Side