May 16, 2024
Search
Close this search box.
Search
Close this search box.
May 16, 2024
Search
Close this search box.

Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

The Differences Between Being at Home and Returning to Your House

Numerous times over the past year we have been asked when we will no longer be “New in the Neighborhood.” We have thought of what would be the appropriate way to properly address that query. After spending five days in Montreal last week we think we can explain the answer more succinctly.

It begins easily with our drive. At no time do we need Waze to drive to, or within, Montreal. We just know where to go. Rarely do we not use some navigational system when travelling in Teaneck. (We have to admit that our grandson just told us that he also has no idea where he is going on the other side of West Englewood.) We are frequently lost. Springfield, Leonia, Lodi, and so many other cities in New Jersey: We have no idea where many of them are. Is West Milford next to New Milford? Is Bergen near us? We do not have a clue.

Despite the fact that we lived in a particular area of Montreal with which we are extremely familiar, we were also very comfortable in Trois Rivieres, Ste Anne de Bellevue, Vaudreuil and Valleyfield, just to name a few.

Entering Pizza Pita to have a snack and immediately being greeted by the owners is a memory of what used to be and what will never be here. Walking in the Cavendish Mall and being met by friends in all directions is an experience that will never be replicated here. Standing on line at the checkout at IGA (our amazing former supermarket) and being friends for years with the cashiers who remember our children when they were younger will never happen to us again. Walking on our former street, excited to see our neighbors, all of whom have been in our home, will never happen to us again. We do not have one neighbor on New Bridge with whom we have ever shared a meal or a cup of coffee or a discussion. (We would like to mention that our friend, Anita, who lived directly next door to us, passed away on Monday afternoon. We have written about her in the past. We will miss her.)

Coincidentally meeting a close family friend on Shabbat, whose parents were the epitome of survivors who were able to move on with their lives, will not happen here. This family insisted on having Rabbi Glick officiate at their children’s weddings as he had at their own simchas. We are eagerly anticipating a reunion with their family.

It would be difficult for us not to feel “New in the Neighborhood,” yet that in no way means that we are not enjoying our days in Bergenfield/Teaneck. We are grateful to our new friends and Nina, especially, to The Jewish Link for giving her the opportunity to not go stir crazy.

We still are overwhelmed by the luxury of having our children nearby. Just last night, with a major banging on our door (the bell does not work), there was our grandson Ari answering a call for help with our blank computer screen. The knowledge that they are nearby and the fact that our sons-in-law would help in a pinch do outweigh the reasons why we will always feel like newcomers.

Please do not misunderstand. This community is lauded for its chesed, ahavat Yisrael and so many other things. It just will take time for it to really feel like home.

By Rabbi Mordechai and Nina Glick


Rabbi Mordechai and Nina Glick are living in Bergenfield after many years of service to the Montreal Jewish community. Rabbi Glick was the rav of Congregation Ahavat Yisroel as well as a practicing clinical psychologist in private practice. He also taught at Champlain Regional College. The Glicks were frequent speakers at the OU marriage retreats. Nina coordinated all Yachad activities in Montreal and was a co/founder of Maison Shalom, a group home for young adults with special needs. They can be reached at [email protected].

Leave a Comment

Most Popular Articles