Thursday, April 9, 2020

why is this night exactly the same as all the other nights?

Because we're stuck at home and didn't go anywhere today.

Nevertheless, this night (last night as I write) was the first night of Pesach, "Passover" to you, and since the friends-and-(their)-family seder I usually attend is obviously not on this year, I could only commemorate the occasion by making matzo ball soup - the usual first main course in our custom - for dinner, along with the "comfort broccoli" whose recipe I recently learned, a variant on the roasted broccoli I've made before.

Going through the whole seder ritual for just two would have been a little obtuse - it needs a festive gathering - and yes, there are online seders you can attend; a mailing list I'm on sent a long list of them. But I've attended large and impersonal seders full of strangers before, and even in person that doesn't cut it either. It's about being surrounded by people you know and love. In my own family, the center of it was my grandmother, the only one of us who really was at home with hosting a gathering and cooking a big meal. Her matzo ball soup and sponge cake were exquisite, and so was the pleasure with which she served them. The gathering lost its heart when she died, and that was some 35 years ago. I miss her.

(RIP Ruth (Rashe) Sadovsky Bratman Gumbin Battinus, 1909-1984)

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