My carefully choreographed plans for my two day trip to Houston were upended Sunday night by the constantly changing predictions of when a major snowstorm would hit the east coast. As a result of a revised forecast which had the snow arriving during the day on Monday, I had to change my original flight plans which had me leaving after maariv on Monday evening I flew out on a 9:00 am flight. In addition to losing a much needed day in the office, I was forced to attend the 6:15am rocket minyan at YISE. Were I not saying kaddish I would have davened at home rather than attend this “drive by” minyan.
I arrived in Houston mid afternoon and attended mincha/maariv at the Young Israel of Houston. I was literally shocked by the obvious robustness of the Houston Orthodox community. There is a community Kollel in Houston and many who came to that mincha minyan were either members of or associated with the Kollel.
The 6:15 am shachris minyan (one of two regular minyanim) was even more impressive. At least 75 men attended this early shachris minyan.
Another added benefit was a fairly nice newly opened steak restaurant at which I was able to comfortably entertain business associates for dinner.
The only downside is that I will have to miss mincha today. The shul is an hour away from the airport due to Houston’s terrible traffic during the evening rush. So I changed my originally scheduled 7:00 pm flight to a mid afternoon flight so that I can hopefully make maariv at the Yeshiva tonight.
UPDATE FROM THE AIR
Just when you think you have things under control Hashem reminds who is really in charge. I arrived at the airport with plenty of time; the flight boarded on time; pulled out onto the runway; and then the plane taxied off the runway and the pilot announced that there was a “minor” maintenance issue which would delay take off a few minutes.
An hour and forty-five minutes later we finally took off. And now my plan, which I was very confident would enable me to say kaddish at maariv in the Yeshiva, is very much at risk. An important reminder applicable to life. All man can do is his “hishtadlus” (effort). Success is in G-d’s hands