Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Passover Customs and Memories

This post is reprinted, slightly edited, from one of my old blogs.

Passover began last night. I remember Passover Seders in Baba's apartment. (She and Grandpa lived right in our building, so I saw them every day) As the only child, I was the one who had to ask the Four Questions every year. But I was also the one who was SURE to get the afikoman present every year. The afikoman is the piece of matzoh eaten at the end of the Seder. In larger families, one of the children "steals" the afikoman, but where there is only one child, the adults hide the afikoman, and the child hunts for it at the appropriate time. In my family, it was hidden. Oh, the fun I had hunting for it! I recently read that some families have yet another tradition: The afikoman is hidden early in the day, or perhaps the evening before, by the father. The kid who finds it first hides it somewhere else, and so on. No matter what the family's afikoman tradition may be, the father (or whoever is leading the Seder) has to promise the child who has the afikoman a present (child's choice, and oh did I love that!) in order to get it back. And I remember the songs, Dayenu and Adir Hu. I found several versions of Adir Hu online awhile ago, different melodies, but none of them the one I grew up with.