Iconic Sites for Caroline by Strangers


From the Golden Gate Bridge All the Way to Capitol Hill

“Can you take photos of Caroline on your trip to San Francisco for me?” I asked my friend Ayala Raiter from Toronto. (Another Strangers Hugs story for another post.)
She was puzzled, so I explained: “I am trying to collect pictures of Caroline on a world tour. As if she is a person.“ I giggled as she giggled back.
Yes, I know it sounds odd to take a book on trips, but hey! I lived in so many places in the world for a solid reason.
She captured photos against the iconic Golden Gate Bridge backdrop. With her husband Yoav as the photographer. Thank you, Yoav. ❤

“I am going to send the book to my aunt. If Naa’va loves it, we will have a winner.” She added, “She is a heavy reader.”
So poor Naa’va and her hubby, Gershon Feder, received the book in their home in Virginia.

‏A few days later, Ayala updated me, “Naa’va loved your book,” and gave me Naa’va’s number. You already know I love to talk to anyone who loves my book.
‏We quickly became friends through WhatsApp. Naa’va told me, “My husband Gershon read your book, too, and he liked it a lot.” Okay, let’s just say I heard that she said he loved it.

‏I asked Naa’va, “Can you take Caroline’s picture in front of the White House for me?” which she did! Gershon accompanied her in a car despite the no-stopping zone. She quickly snapped photos and sent them to me.
On a side note, Naa’va is a busy Jewish reformist cantor with three kids and five grandkids. I can see maybe why Naa’va was helping me, but Gershon! He is an agricultural economist working with the White House to help find solutions for huge universal agriculture issues. I can assure you the last thing he needs is to take a random wild lady book to a photo shoot at the White House.

‏Later on, I talked to Naa’va and told her I would be in New York City in February 2023. Naa’va graciously invited me to stay with them in DC. Clearly, she is as crazy as me to invite a stranger to stay at her home. I thanked her and ultimately agreed to make a day visit.
‏Naa’va and Gershon kindly offered to pick me up from the train station.

‏My adventurous day began with a 3 o’clock wake-up call to catch a train from New York. Kim, my Italian friend, Asked, “Nava, are you out of your freaking mind to go to people you don’t know?”
‏It was utterly characteristic of me: Walking to Pen Station at the wee hours of the day, crossing paths with the homeless and the crazy ones that the police already knew of, and I just sat there.
I also contacted Andrea, my old-time friend, the Posh Tots site queen, Sara and Beth, my friends from Lewis of London MD, since 1988, and finally, Dalia, Nava’s Designs customer from 2007.

‏We met at the iconic DC train station, hugged as old family Naa’va brought a picnic to the car, drove around the White House and Capitol Hill to take photos of my book and myself, and back to pick up Andrea from the train station.
At Naa’va and Gershon’s beautiful home, we had coffee, cake, and fruit galore. We took a tour of Naa’va’s porcelain collection and Gershon’s collections of crystals and swords, among others. Later, we made a stop at Dalia’s chocolate boutique. It was still unbelievable that I met Dalia in person for the first time that day.

‏As I said, I designed her son’s baby bedding. I will never forget the image of her room with my “Sandcastle” set. Yup, I still remember the names of the sets I designed. We had a taste of great chocolate and parted with hugs.
‏Sara and Beth joined us for a delightful dinner at a Chinese restaurant. Galia, Naa’va’s friend, also joined us. It was a blast to catch up and relish a diverse dinner with this wonderful group. Gershon and Naa’va were outstanding hosts and extended their hospitality to the entire table.
I left DC with a sense of talking in my head to my memories of JFK, sharing with him that I came to visit the place where I first heard his voice: “My fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country.”
If only we could ask ourselves that question more often!

Thank you, Naa’va and Gershon Feder, for your great hospitality. And thank you, Andrea, Sara, Beth, Dalia, and Galia, for sharing my day. I love you all.

5 Responses

  1. אההה הבנתי עכשיו
    סיפור מקסים שייזכר להרבה שנים ♥️♥️
    דודה נאווה ודוד גרשון האהובים ונאוה שהכרתי רק לפני שנה ..והיא חלק מהמשפחה

  2. What an incredible story about relationships and connections within the book! It’s no wonder that the book is captivating readers worldwide and spreading its story to so many souls.

  3. All of us had a fun day filled with laughter.
    Incredibly, we felt after such a short time so close to Nava , as if we knew her for such a long time. When Andrea, the friend from Richmond entered our car at the train station,
    She noticed the friendship and closeness in the car, and she asked Gershon: “How long have you known Nava?”. She was flabbergasted when Gershon answered :”20 minutes” …
    We believe in chemistry and beautiful friendship, time doesn’t matter only the quality of the people.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *