Sunday, August 27, 2017


There have been certain immutables in my life; my mother asking if I had enough to eat, my love affair with the Yankees, my support for the Democratic party.

And, oh yes, one more: an invitation to break the fast at the home of my friends.

For what must be at least a quarter of a century, as sure as the sun rises, there was this feast. My friends, as generous of appetite as they are of heart, with their motto excess is best displayed in a kitchen that is the epicenter of their universe, hosting a hungry horde of friends, relatives and assorted countrymen. The lox my perpetual favorite, but devouring whatever was within arm's reach.

It mattered not that I long ago stopped the practice of fasting, my mind and stomach triggered merely by the thought of the gastronomic treat that awaited.

And even as life changed, a child married and our family was pulled in different directions, even as this year an invitation to another home was accepted, the possibility of not receiving that wonderful note requesting our presence at the home of our friends seemed as remote as a trip to Mars.

So it was with more than a touch of bewilderment that I read, multiple times, the announcement: there would be a one year hiatus in the tradition, as my friend's family was heading to other environs to celebrate this year. It was an email promising this was but a hiccup, but it was like suggesting that the sun would be on vacation until further notice, or that my mom was telling me that I had eaten too much already.

Or  like waking up one morning to find the Yankees no longer in pinstripes, names now prominently displayed on the back of their uniforms. Oh, you say that's exactly what occurred this weekend.

My friend's thoughts appeared to be part apology, part lament, for he understood that it was not just his pleasure, but his duty to open his arms and his kitchen to the huddled masses on this day each year. To not do so would be akin to Lady Liberty turning her back on those at her doorstep yearning to be free.
Oh, this is a most unusual and unsettling time.


Anonymous said...

I understand how you feel
The same happened to us

My husband fasts and stays to the end of the service and the shofar is blown
Our friends who over the years started eating before we got there but always waited for us before they moved any food called to say they were going to have to make other plans this year as their son's fiancée's family
Invited them to their home

We were invited but somethings just have to change and so we feel your pain


Anonymous said...

Is there such a thing as a temporary immutable?