Our Passover celebration went back to its pre-pandemic glory! Can you tell which table is from 2019 and which is from 2022??
As the pandemic picked up speed and we began lockdown in 2020, I knew I had to act fast. I quickly ordered the books for the seder (the Haggadah, the book we read that tells the story of the Jews going out from Egypt, retold every year at this holiday) from Amazon and began to plan to host my own seder service, first time I ever hosted in 61 years. It was picture perfect with the three of us and my son’s GF at the time. And I am grateful that last year we went back to my brother hosting the seder in his house with my parents’ assistance (they live with him in a separate apartment). Once was enough for me!
And what is Passover you ask? Passover is when the Jewish people celebrate that time, millennia ago, when we were slaves in Egypt, and God helped us escape. Moses was our leader, and when he told the current Pharoah we wished to leave and no longer be his slaves (who do you think built those pyramids!), Pharoah said no. 10 plagues befell the Egyptians until Pharoah let us go, because the last plague was the killing of the first-born male child from every household. The same murderous decree that Pharoah had enacted on the Jews a short time earlier. We call the holiday Passover, because all Jewish households were told to put lambs’ blood on their doors so the angel of death would pass over their house and the first-born males would be safe.
Also, we were in a rush, so there was no time to bake bread. No dough had time to rise, hence the flat bread like product we eat for the eight days of Passover, Matzah! For more info feel free to read Wikipedia’s interpretation!
We did have a seder last year at my brother’s house, but it was a smaller crowd, we practiced social distancing!
My parents are in their late 80’s, so this year’s seder required a Covid test!
These seders are for family and friends. My family is the most religious on my mother’s side of the family, so my cousins on that side are always invited. It is wonderful to at least see these cousins once a year, for over half a century! We always add friends to the mix, some old, some new, we love sharing these types of experiences with people of all faiths! And everyone is expected to participate as we all read a paragraph from the seder book, the Haggadah.
I will close with a memory of the seders from when I was growing up. No snacking was allowed, the seder seemed to go on for hours, and we were all starving! That ended when my brother started hosting the seder in his house, and his wife at the time always had a meal before the meal, as you can see below, no one started the seder hungry anymore! This is also the last time we got to see cousin Erica, may she rest in peace, she is always remembered at every family gathering.
I will always be grateful for these memories that I have been building my entire life!