Next Year in the Holy Land!

The Coopers never said "Make yourself at home.” They didn't need to; their house said it for them. It was cozy, cluttered, and had their kid's framed watercolor pictures hanging in the living room, family photos stuck to the refrigerator and construction paper mobiles hanging from a door way (they were blue Stars of David). Marty, the dad, was just finishing hanging up a coat rack in the entranceway when we arrived, and was un-shy about letting a generous amount of "Fuck!"s punctuate his efforts. Sandy, the enormous old golden retriever, made herself comfortable in the middle of the kitchen floor, and no one seemed to mind having to step over her constantly. She was really friendly, and was delighted to find me gung-ho about scratching her behind the ears. Later, she would share my bed.

Passover was hilarious; I should have guessed I was in for an experience when I was informed that "Due to the events of Rosh Hassahana, there will not be candles on the table" (but there were, Dad insisted, and everyone was warned that there better not be any more incidents like before...I didn't ask). In between the ancient chanting there were fits of hysterical laughter. Rachel (Byron's cousin) and her younger twin siblings, Ben and Leah, maintained good-natured argumentative banter with their dad, Byron and Uncle while Betsy (mom) alternated between joining them and rolling her eyes. There was, at one point, a minor food fight. I spent half the dinner intoxicated, because it is traditional to have a lot of red wine with the Seder, so I can't tell you exactly what happened, but SOMEhow, Byron's fat ass broke a dining room chair. He also managed to break a glass later in the evening, but Betsy told me that I, at least, am invited back.

We did a Passover play to tell the story of the 10 plagues, and I got to play several different parts; Rachel got to play G-D.

The entire Seder was a lot of fun, and I, at one point, had matzo nearly come out of my nose, I was laughing so hard. When it's not working it's way out of your nasal cavity, the stuff is pretty good, though, and we got to take a box home.

All the non-Kosher food was put in a cabinet and duct taped closed for the eight nights, so that they would remember not to eat it. These people are REALLY Jewish, and, unlike Christians, they aren’t creepy when heavily involved in their religion, which I appreciated.