So, yah most Jewish holidays really are "they attacked us, we won, let's eat".
Purim of course is no exception. As I sit here at my computer, I am nursing a cup of tea and a little Purim cookie and I'm just really happy.
I love Purim. There are a number of obligations that one must fulfill on Purim.
One must hear the Megilah (The Book of Esther) twice. Not read-hear. You have to hear it read aloud.
One must give little food packages to friends, and best through an intermediary (I tend to use slave labour-one of the kids).
One must give charity and have a festive meal.
I spent a few hours giving out little packages and it was a very interesting feeling to know that not only am I personally carrying on a tradition, I am instilling memories of how to do the tradition into my kids. I was consciously creating future memories. Does that make sense?
Our meal was delicious if I do say so myself.
And there are more festivities coming, it's a very busy time.
I came across this lovely article called "My Hamentaschen Challenge" and it's so beautiful I had to share it with you.
There's a very Jewish Old Country accent and cadence that one hears less and less nowadays. It's how native Yiddish speakers speak English and wow do I ever miss hearing my grandparents speak this way.
Anyway, when I read this loving article, it also reminded me of them. And this paragraph kind of knocked my socks off, just full of love, like a good piece of personal writing should be.
Read the whole thing. Just lovely.
"My mother-in-law complained about everyone’s baking except her own. Her most damning insult, delivered in a dramatic stage whisper, was to accuse someone of “baking on margarine!” It took me a long time to figure out what she meant by this. Did her baking adversary just grease the pans with margarine, or did it actually go into the dough? Even between South Jersey and the Bronx, there was sometimes a language barrier. My mother-in-law made a party, she never threw it, and when she did, she always baked on butter. With me, civility had to be maintained, even when she had something to say about my baking. “What these oatmeal muffins need is zip. When I want zip, I add some cinnamon.” I bit my tongue and decided I hated cinnamon. So what was I thinking, now, with the cinnamon?