The Pope, the Rabbi and a telephone call to Heaven from Jerusalem

In Israel last month, living a #Travelife, I remembered this joke about the Pope, the Rabbi and a telephone call to Heaven from Jerusalem. It was told to me by my guide in Jerusalem about three trips to Israel ago, as we stood in the shade gazing out onto the Wailing Wall.


I never forgot this story and it’s quite timely to think about now as I’m packing my luggage to fly to Tel Aviv for another memorable #Travelife to Israel. I still have to fly to Tokyo this weekend and then it’s on to Hokkaido for some last hurrah skiing next week before getting on that plane for Tel Aviv; but yes, I’ll be in Israel sooner than I can say “Happy Hannukah.”


Jerusalem’s Wailing Wall
On that particular trip to Israel, I’d spent one morning in the Old Town section of Jerusalem, you see, when my guide decided to tell me this story. In fact, I can still remember exactly where we were — we were standing on a landing overlooking the Wailing Wall and the Al Aqsa Mosque. Living a never-ending Travelife, of course.




Anyway, the story goes that the Rabbi of Jerusalem once visited the Pope in the Vatican in Rome. When he entered the Pope’s office, he saw a gold telephone on the Pope’s desk. So the Rabbi asked the Pope: “What is that?”
The Pope answered: “Oh that? That’s my telephone for calling God.” The Rabbi was very impressed. He said to himself then: “I definitely have to get myself one of those. 




Then a couple of months later, the Pope visited the Rabbi in his office in Jerusalem. By that time, the Rabbi of Jerusalem had already gotten himself a gold telephone for calling God, and this was proudly displayed on his table.


The Pope saw the gold telephone and said to him: “I see you’ve gotten yourself one of those gold telephones for calling God.” The Rabbi nodded happily. Then the Pope continued: “It’s really very useful to have a hotline to God. I just wish it was cheaper to call God.”



The Rabbi asked the Pope: “Why? How much does it cost you to call God on your telephone at the Vatican?” The Pope answered: “It’s very expensive. It costs me about US$1,000 a minute to use my gold phone.” The Rabbi shook his head and remarked: “That’s unbelievable. How very unfortunate for you.”
The Pope was surprised. So he asked the Rabbi: “Why? How much does it cost you to call God from your telephone in Jerusalem?” The Rabbi answered: “Only about ten cents a minute.”
The Pope was shocked. He said: “Ten cents a minute to call God? But how can that be?” The Rabbi answered: “Well, for me in Jerusalem, talking to God is just a local call.” We all burst out laughing at this joke. Hope you enjoy it too, wherever in the world you happen to be, on just another wonderful day in our never-ending, and never-endingly eventful Travelife.