Do you remember the first time you put on tefillin? (sorry if this is such a guy-centric question)
I recall it more or less...it was an ordinary day in shul a month before my Bar Mitzva.
It wasn't simple putting them on -- the leather chaffed my arm, the straps coming down from my neck kept flipping around...you know what I mean.
A much older friend (like 50 years older) came over to me and took my tefillin box, suddenly flipped it open like a StarTrek tricorder and said, "Kirk to Hashem...Kirk to Hashem...got a guy here putting on tefillin for the first time...he could use some help." That put me a bit more at ease.
Yet other than that, I don't recall much about it.
So...my son put on tefillin last week for the first time as well and we decided to make it more meaningful. Instead of just putting on tefillin at shul in the morning, we drove to Me'arat HaMachpela in Hevron.
We met some relatives at "Tzomet haGush" (the intersection of Road 60 in Gush Etzion where you make a right to Alon Shvut), so those who felt less at ease travelling to Hevron, could drive behind us.
It took about 15 minutes to drive to Kiryat Arba, we drove through it, and then straight through the gate leaving Kiryat Arba into Hevron. There's even a yellow stripe on the road so you can follow it straight to Mearat HaMapchpela. About 5 minutes later we were all parking in the middle of Hevron next to the Me'ara.
We brought our own "minyan" of 10 and had our own tefilla...with my son putting on tefillin for the first time.
While we go to Hevron a few times a year, some of our guests hadn't been there in many years, and were happy to have gone.
We had another simcha to run to after minyan, so my son and I said some Tehillim at each of the "tziyonei kever" in the Me'ara (explanation later if I have time) took some family pictures outside, and then drove back.
Luckily, JoeSettler was available to complete our minyan, (or just read the following posting after this one) but there were so many people there, we could have asked anyone to help out.
I don't know how to properly end this posting, but I would like to hope that my son will remember that day with deeper appreciation of his connection to his heritage and Am Yisrael.