Anyone who tries to claim that you can't backpack around the world — going from one party hostel to another — and still keep Yom Kippur: you're wrong. It's possible, and I did it. Following on from the evening service last night, today I spent most of the day once again at the local Chabad house, here in downtown BA, praying for atonement and keeping the fast. Once again, a very nice day of services, and a good turnout of people to help make it happen.
This evening I returned to Chabad la Metayel, here in the downtown district of BA, for the start of Yom Kippur. Despite the fact that they weren't giving out any free food tonight (since you have to fast on Yom Kippur), there was still an ample turnout of long-haired Israelis. They did a very nice Kol Nidrei service, which went for about 3 hours; it was a bit harder to follow than usual, since they don't have any machzorim with English translation — but I still managed to stay on the right page throughout. I'll be back tomorrow, for the rest of the prayer services.
I spent the second day of Rosh Hashanah much as I did the first: that is, praying and eating (and plenty of both) at "Chabad La Metayel", here in downtown Buenos Aires. We did a lot better with getting a minyan this morning, which was good: the service had already started when I arrived; and we had time to do it properly, with all the singing and the joy that really (in my opinion) makes a shul service special. And as with yesterday, we had plenty of shofar sounding interspersed throughout the prayers; and a long and cosy (and totally over-catered) lunch in the afternoon.
I continued celebrating Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year) today, with first day shul services and communal meals. I spent the day at "Chabad La Metayel" (run by my mate Menachem), which is conveniently located about 3 blocks from Hostel Clan, just a 10-minute walk down the street for me. Unfortunately, when I got there (at 11am) the service still hadn't started; and we had to sit and wait until 1pm, when we finally got a minyan and could start doing shacharit. This forced the rabbi to jam the service into a mere 2 hours, at the expense of all singing, and through some serious (true Chabad-style) rapid-fire prayer. However, we still managed to fit in all the soundings of the shofar, which ushered in the New Year with a bang.