Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Cake? During Passover? WHAT was I thinking?

If you're new to Master Jeffrey and haven't had a chance to read about the Time Dumbwaiter (click here,) take a minute now. In writing this story, I've had to learn how to write to the pacing of a book published three pages a week. What I didn't want to lose was the overall structure of the story, and this includes foreshadowing. When the entire story is completed, (and we're about to wrap up chapter four of the five chapter book) I will hopefully have made it worthwhile to re-read the entire tale in one sitting. Yes, I'm looking at a kickstarter in the near future.

Passover started this week, and thinking back, I find that Jeffrey and I never shared a Seder meal together. Being in two different cities, and Passover coming at a time of year, it just never happened in the 34 odd years since I met his sister and eventually married her. This is especially significant when you consider what the Passover Seder is all about.

We go to my wife's cousin's Seder, and have been doing so since the eighties. Joan and her husband Arnold (Mo) are more than relatives, they are good friends. Every year Joan gets a little more intense about the Seder. To give you some sense of degree, about twelve years ago they moved into their current home, which they renovated from an older kit home circa 1945. In all of their considerations regarding the architecture and refinishing, there was one consistent requirement: there had to be room to have 24 people to dinner at ONE TABLE during Passover (and she's been upping her game ever since.)

This year we were given homework. We had to contemplate why the Passover Holiday and Seder were such a significant part of being Jewish. A lot of points were made, including some keen observations by new guests (the list changes every year) but it drove home the point that this meal was at the core of the Jewish community, and it commemorates an event which can be said is the essential center of Jewish existence. And Jeff and I never had one together.

Realizing this, I get thrown back onto the pile of things we should have done together. All the places I should have taken him, and things we could have done. A Passover Seder was never on the list before, but it would be nice to have had one memory of that community meal (if you've never been to one, you should try it.) One of the traditional sayings during and at the end of the meal is "next year in Israel" and I never paid much attention to it. From now on it will remind me that there is not always a next year, and that the family and friends we have should be enjoyed every day while we can.

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