Quarantine Seder by Debbie Ainspan

Like everyone else, we needed to rethink our plans for Pesach this year. We originally planned to host a seder at my father’s house, but by mid-March it became clear that the lamb bone Dad had gamely saved for the seder plate would remain in his freezer. Luckily, a friend from Etz Hayim invited us to his Zoom seder.

Finding groceries posed a challenge, but I found a caterer delivering Passover meal kits. We were able to get everything we needed except a shank bone – a plastic dog bone had to fill in. Isaac had plenty of time to put together a Lego diorama of Moses in the bullrushes as a centerpiece. An iPad on a tripod took its place at the foot of our table, and we logged on to join the seder.

At a time when everything seems new, unsettled, and dangerous, it was a comfort to read the familiar words of the haggadah, sing the Passover songs (even if Zoom audio lags made our rousing rendition of Dayenu a bit disjointed), and taste the ritual foods. Most importantly, we had the chance to connect Jewishly with friends from the congregation. This year, in addition to “next year in Jerusalem,” we fervently added “next year, together.”

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