Have Knife - Will Travel

Welcome to travelingmohel.com! If you are expecting a boy, or if your son has just been born, and you live in an area without a local mohel (or the local mohel is unavailable, or you are exploring other options), travelingmohel.com is the address for you.

I come highly recommended by happy parents, rabbis and physicians, and have developed the traveling for a bris down to a science so that you have the best experience possible from a traveling mohel, your baby is given the attention he needs and deserves, and we remain in constant contact until your baby is completely healed from his bris (circumcision).

I currently live in South Florida, making me an ideal candidate to fly anywhere in the Caribbean or the United States. I am open to flying just about anywhere in the world!

For more information about me and my thoughts on bris milah/ brit milah/ berit milah, please see my regular blog at http://www.mohelinsouthflorida.com/

Click here to read the inaugural thoughts of this website/blog. This posting is the important first step in understanding what I offer and how my mohel services will best fit your needs.

Thursday

North Orlando, FL

Driving to Orlando for a bris is not the "biggest" deal - for me it's less than a three hour drive. But I guess it qualifies for "travelingmohel."

I blogged about the very flattering story that brought me to this family on my main mohel website, so I'm just sharing the link and the photos I posted on Facebook here.



And on Facebook:



 

Durham, NC - Days Before Pesach

The call came on Tuesday, "Are you available next Tuesday to come to Durham?"

Wow! What brings you to Durham?

"Medical school."

All the information I got aligned - turns out I know the new mom's family from my days living in Queens.

One never knows what demeanor first time parents will have when facing their son's bris. But this special duo were incredibly chilled out, patient and lovely. As were their respective parents and the baby's great (or shall we say 'awesome') grandma who flew in for the bris as well.

Days like this are quite unique because my traveling is solely for the family. I was part of the family for the better part of the day, and felt part of their simcha in a manner above and beyond the normal and more typical experience.

Their "Shul" is an orthodox minyan housed in a Conservative Shul. I met the rabbi who was present at the Chapel Hill bris of three years ago - he is from Chapel Hill, not in this Durham community. Yet another reminder of the smaller side of the Jewish community here.

Some pictures.





Monday

This is Houston, We Have a Problem...

Heading to Houston, TX, for a bris this morning, because last week I got a call from a family looking for a specific style from the mohel they sought to hire.

Can't take full credit - I did get a referral. But while a simple search for mohel in Houston did net a few results, including one who was featured as one of :"America's Top Mohels" (JTA 2014, in one of the classic reasons why "top" anything lists are kinda silly) I can see that the variety of options is not like what people can find in Florida, where I live, or in New York.

Of course, many people just call the local mohel when they need to have a bris. In some towns there is one mohel, and he is beloved by everyone, or he somehow works for everyone.

When that is not the case, I am happy to make the trip. After all, "Have knife... will travel!"

A New Year!

While I have not been on the road as much as I was in the past, mostly staying in Florida, there have been a few drives - including to Tampa and north of Orlando, as well as a trip to Gainesville, over the last few months.

I've also had inquiries from the Bahamas, Puerto Rico and Alaska, sometimes for babies that have not yet been born, to babies that have been born. Air-travel costs are typically prohibitive, especially on short notice - as a bris usually is - which may contribute to some people looking for a doctor or (in the case of Alaska) getting someone to come from Seattle or somewhere in California.

But we are still here! And A-1 service is available for those who seek it from this traveling mohel!

Tuesday

1 Bris - No, Make that Two

I came into New York Sunday night for a bris I was going to do Monday morning.

When I arrived and turned my phone back on, I had a message that said, "Hi. We had a baby and want to talk to you about a bris in NY."

I called, only to find out the baby was over a month old - he had been born premature - and had just come home from the hospital. Owing to a not-so-clear Rabbinic rule about the postponement of a bris, the father was under the assumption that the bris would take place the following week.

However, after asking a few questions and finding out the full story, it became clear that the delay period was not necessary and that the bris could take place right away.

So instead of having one bris on Monday, I ended up serving as mohel twice!

I love when things align that way...

Wednesday

Chapel Hill, NC Bris - EREV PESACH

Almost a timing nightmare, I received a call to do a bris in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, one week before Pesach (Passover). Going away for a holiday (I observe both days - don't travel or use the telephone) would be exceedingly difficult, for two reasons - spending a holiday in an unfamiliar environment is less than ideal, and being away from my family is not something I prefer to consider doing.

Luckily the baby was born Monday - making his bris on Monday - Erev Pesach.

I booked a flight to come Sunday evening, I was put up in a hotel, and the bris was early in the morning - 8:30am. Last dose of chometz (o yes, there were bagels) for all the participants in advance of the holiday.

The ceremony was very nice. Between the grandparents and great-grandma, and uncles and aunts, family was well represented. It was a uniquely educational experience for those in attendance on account of all the connections between Pesach and Bris Milah, which I don't usually get the opportunity to speak about because it's not usually as relevant.

Three connections:
1. We set a cup for Elijah at the Seder, and a chair for Elijah at the bris
2. The Passover miracle is partly attributed to blood - the blood placed on the doorposts
    The Covenant of Circumcision was forged over blood - in Hebrew דם מילה
We actually allude to both when we name the baby, as we quote the verse ואמר לך בדמיל חיי - And I said to you through your bloods you will live (the plural refers to the Blood of Pesach and the Blood of Circumcision) (Ezekiel 16:6)
3. In the days when there was a Paschal Lamb Sacrifice, a male who was uncircumcised could not partake in the eating of the lamb.

My return flight was 1pm, so I removed the baby's bandage at 11am, did not need to reapply a dressing  (and everything looked great!) and I made my way to the airport for the return flight home - which left relatively ontime and arrived a little early! Home in time for the holiday, with a couple of hours to spare.

A special family, a special bris, and a special introduction to the holiday of Pesach.

Mazal tov!

Post bris nap in his Bubby's arms

Stuart, FL BRIS

Perhaps not as exotic as flying, but I drove to Stuart, FL this week for a bris. About 90 miles each way, the trip was quite pleasant. Thank God for books on tape (CD).

Lovely family, both parents and at least one grandfather in the medical field. Baby's father is a urologist.

The email I received afterwards read, "Thank you Rabbi. I think you did a great job."

His "I think" is a medical opinion (as opposed to "I think but I'm not sure"), which is most appreciated coming from a urologist.

It was a privilege to be there. Thanks for having me!