Recently I was asked to share a favorite Passover story. Dozens of memories flashed through my mind, most of them involving matzo, like the year we went to Seder at my brother’s house and their dog, Bert, stole the Afikoman while we ate dinner. Then there was the time with my husband’s family where the kids hid the Afikoman for the adults. After much searching, a dozen people announced that they had found the hidden matzo and held up napkin wrapped fakes. The looks on the kids’ faces were priceless. Of course my husband loves to tell the story about when his aunt moved and they found an old Afikoman hidden behind a picture. I’m sure many people have stories like that in their family.
Our engagement was also announced on Passover. Saturday morning we drove from Maryland to NJ and told our parents. After an early Seder (and meal) with my family, we drove to my future husband’s family gathering. Forty people packed the townhouse where he announced “I’d like to introduce my fiancé.” That night we drove back to Maryland. It was a wonderful but exhausting day.
Even with all these delightful Passover memories, there is one that stands out in my mind and it’s the one I shared. When I close my eyes I can still see it: the little apartment in NY, a piano on the right hand wall near the kitchen, my aunt, uncle, and cousins from my dad’s family. I loved visiting with my cousins and listening to my grandpa chant the prayers in Hebrew. Then the meal would come. I think there may have been pot-roast somewhere on the table, but the plate of steaming sliced tongue was what I reached for every time. Tongue must be a NY/NJ kind of delicacy. It’s hard to find here in Maryland. When I do find it, I’m always reminded of my family, and the occasional sing along with Grandma playing that piano I mentioned.
Do you have a Passover memory you’d like to share?