First. A reminder about our journeys to date. Unlike taking an Omer of Barley to Jerusalem each day of the Count we are taking something different on a trip to make our personal stories stronger and more grounded and hopefully even healthier than they already are - we are taking ourselves. During the last 33 days there have been writings to connect you to memory links via photos, Torah, childhood memories, stories, and daily reports. Snippets of life. Now it is time to narrow the path to your story in some organized fashion. Beginning, middle, and on!
During the course of the next 15 days I'd like you to think about the basic outline of your story starting from the beginning. We will take steps along the way to add parts and because we all were born at different times and are at different phases in our lives there might be some that don't fit your profile. As always I'd like to connect you to your surroundings with the information that is closest to me - mine - and as always I'd like you to convert it to your own lives. And as always the spiritual parts will be very important.
This is where we should start: The beginning. I have no memory of that very start and imagine that most of you don't either. So what's the first thing that clearly comes to mind. A little table in the kitchen of the one bedroom apartment we lived in painted red that could only fit two little people - me and my brother. As if it were yesterday. My first secular memory. My first Jewish memory, sort of, was the Christmas Day that Phillip Lewin dressed as Santa knocked on our apartment door. He was the furrier who lived across the hall and the Santa costume was elegant. Scared us half to death - we ran and hid under the living room chair. The next week, when Religious School started we joined Temple Emanuel. The beginning.
Santa Claus will always be part of my Jewish journey. In December when there are multiple Santas I get multiple beginnings for my Jewish journey.
Today is the 34th day of the Counting of the Omer and the beginning.
I've always loved the color red. marilyn
My first Jewish memory (at least that I have summoned up in response to your challenge) is my cousin Yudy (aka Jules, but never in the family until he got married and we all learned to follow his bride in calling him by his English name) trying to teach me -- probably age 3 -- the mah nishtana. I also visualize my zaydie leading one seder in our dining room; after he died, when I was seven, seder moved upstairs to Tante Anna and Uncle Jake's living room -- they were Yudy's parents. However, Uncle Jake was not the one who took over running the seder, Uncle Morris was. And by that time, there were three mah nishtanahs -- my younger brother and my cousin Jimmy joined me in showing off what we had all learned in Hebrew school.
Thanks for the trip down memory lane.
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