Where once there was one to light, now there are too many.
Happy New Year. Today the Jewish New Year of 5773 begins. Yesterday four Roths got together to celebrate. No painting was done. Instead, we ate hamburgers and chips on the back deck talking and laughing, being together and missing those of us who moved too far away to come home.
Eighty degrees, sunshine on leaves rimmed with red, the ambiance for this special occassion was delightful. I was going to make the traditional brisket with potatoes slowly roasted with chopped onions, celery, carrots, and a liquid mix of beer and barbecue sauce, but there were just the four of us. Being that one of us was a teenager, his nana opted to make something a teenager might prefer. To fancy up the menu, I made caramelized onions instead of slicing a Burmuda. They were a hit. But I told Zac, if anybody asks, you had brisket. Hamburgers on a High Holly day is outrageous. We hugged on it.
After the late lunch, we lighted Yahzeit candles and said a prayer in remembrance of family members who had passed away. There were quite a few--enough that if we lit one per person, we'd have a fire hazard, so we opted for four to cover the seven who are missed. Then we walked down to the lake, each with a slice of challah bread, to throw our sins in the water to be cast off...and snapped up by creatures of the deep.
The fish swarmed the dock to feast on road rage, chip gluttony,procrastination, candle stinginess and hamburger cover ups as soon as the tidbits hit the water. This walk is called the Tashlikh walk. I had never heard of it as a kid. It took getting to be a nana, me brushing up on all the holidays, and us moving to a lake to put this lovely tradition into play.
The Tasklikh is one of my favorite things to do on Rosh Hashanah. The intimacies shared at the lake, the recollections they bring to mind and the discussion of values binds young to old. I'm sorry the rest of the Roth gang wasn't there. They were missed.
As the world has grown bigger, family gatherings have gotten smaller. It's sad. As the world is growing into a global community, family units are breaking up with the expansion as the economy takes members where ever they have to go to make a living. That is good, but not as good as when aunts and uncles and cousins, parents and grandparents filled a small house on Elmhurst, down the block from the synagogue, wall to wall with generations of warmth, total loyalty and love no matter what on the holidays. It's a bitch actually as traditions die.
|Before Sunrise, Peace|