Some 2,990 miles, and three time zones apart, my mother and I read the same haftarah this morning, in shuls with the same name! This is something we are both, separately, learning how to do. It was kind of nice to know that we were both doing this today.
I’ve been leyning for several years, but didn’t learn haftarah trope till recently when I decided to teach myself as a procrastination technique when I was avoiding research papers. Yes, I am decidedly a nerd!
(Okay, so I did read torah and haftarah at my bat mitzvah many moons ago, but at the time I was really not able to learn the trope. Funny how at a later age I learned it effortlessly. I was just ready.)
I think I prefer torah reading to haftarah. As someone commented to me recently, it’s sexier! It’s also easier for me. True, you don’t have the vowels and trope in front of you, so it requires substantially more practice. But the language is easier. And much as I’d love my Hebrew to be so good that I don’t mind the poetic mumbo jumbo – at least it's reassuring to know that it’s good enough that I notice the difference! (Sort of like when I was studying for my Bat Mitzvah and my mother said that she felt good knowing that I was struggling with the words to the kaddish cause it meant I knew the difference between Hebrew and Aramaic!)