In a few days Passover begins, one of the most unique Passovers any of us have ever experienced. In an era where the new normal is incredibly abnormal, this year’s seders will not see us gathering with our extended family around our table, but instead placing a laptop on our table so that we can Zoom our seder with those we love as they sit around theirs.
How else is this year different from all other year’s? In restricting how much we’ve gone out, we’re finding that we don’t have all our “normal” Passover supplies. Instead of horseradish, we’ll use romaine lettuce. Instead of Manischewitz, we’ll use whatever kosher wine we found at Trader Joe’s. Menu planning is beginning to feel a bit like the show Chopped. What Passover foods do we have on hand and what can we make with them?
And what about haggadot? Two years ago I finally rid the house of multiple Maxwell House versions and invested in a dozen of the Artscroll Family Haggadah, but how can I use that with family members who have different translations in their homes? And so I scoured my computer for the PDF I had once purchased of that very untraditional 30 Minute Seder Haggadah and sent it off to my parents and to my brother and sister-in-law, so that we can all be on the same page.
What shall we do about searching for the Afikoman? Will my father Venmo five dollars to the child who finds it? What about Elijah? Who would dare open the door and risk someone walking in? Or perhaps, even more relevantly, should we rub lamb’s blood on our doorposts to protect us?
Yes, I joke. But at the same time, I recognize in all seriousness that the steps we take are for our own safety.
Hunkering down is so very, very important. None of us wants next year’s seder to be missing any of those we love and hold dear.
Wishing you all a safe and kosher Pesach and an even safer year.