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The Rabbi on the Beach @ The Shul on the Beach

The Wave

Yesterday we took the boys to Adventure City. We had a great time. The rides are perfect for a 5 year old like Rami and he was able to hop onto any ride he wanted with no wait. Some of the rides there are pretty intense and yet Rami was undeterred. I am blogging today because of two women. The first of those women is pictured below waving excitedly. We will get to the second woman shortly.waver


I am certain that you have noticed that all amusement / theme parks must have a train which goes around the park. This is an unwritten rule in the theme park code which if not adhered to can have dire consequences for the park. Towards the end of our stay at Adventure City we decide to board the train. I love the theme park train stations. They have all the “destinations” with arrows showing the direction you must travel to reach those destination and the mileage to each location as well.NYLASF

The next best part of the station is the nostalgic luggage. They have the same thing at Ellis Island so I guess this is really important! Luggage

Finally the train arrives. The conductor is an old man with a hat that is striped blue and white. We got on the train and began our journey. As we made or way around the vast expanses of Adventure City Tova (my wife) – the second woman in the story, made such a great observation. Whenever the train passes someone that person feels this uncontrollable urge to wave at the train and its passengers. Why do they do this? These same people don’t wave when we walk by them. We would think they were crazy if they just waved excitedly every time someone passed them by. Imagine if the old lady on top had to wave to everybody she saw all day. She would go bonkers! Why do they wave when we pass them by train? This got me thinking – where does waving come from? Who invented it? Is waving to say hello universal? When did it begin? I did some research on Wikipedia and around the web but found nothing substantive. So I am looking for answers. In general – what is this waving all about? Origins? Where is it used? Why this gesture?

As important as all this is there is a more important issue here. What is the reason people feel compelled to wave at the train passengers? I know there must be something to it. The sign at the Adventure City train station even has safety rules for waving. waveBut the sign does not explain WHY I should wave as the train goes by…

I can’t help but think that there is something profound and important connected with all this wave talk – I just can’t put my finger on it yet…

So I am looking for ideas from you!

Filed under: All Posts, Musings & Observations, , , , ,

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January 2009

Photos of PJC

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