Monday, March 25, 2013

Nana and Passover

I always feel my grandmother around me a bit more at Passover. She loved the holiday.

As I started up my snow covered car today I was immediately transported back. 

To the small kitchen in the 2nd story walk-up; right above The Loyal Order of the Moose on the avenue. I was standing at the casement window futzing with the little pots of herbs.

"It's going to be snowing for Passover Nana"
She chuckles. "Snow should be the only thing Jews worry about. It's weather, you walk through weather and don't question it. It's spring, it will melt quickly."

Oh how I loved her laugh, especially the little chuckles. Seemed just about anything I said delighted and amused her. 

The car seemed to take on the color of that kitchen. My uncles had surprised Nana one Mother's Day by wallpapering the room.

"Oh my. This looks lovely. You're wonderful boys, thank you. Sit. Eat."

Later that night

"Nana do you really like the wallpaper?"
"Promise not to tell. They wanted to do something good. I love that."
I promised
"It's terrible. It's like the Chinese restaurant. Every morning I'm going to want an egg roll."

The scent of Jean Nate has been with me all day.


 


Have a good Passover everybody.
Even if you're not Jewish or religious or observant.
Nana would feed ya.

Walk through the weather.

Take the moment to recall someone who loved you.

18 comments:

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

Oh Di, what a wonderful tribute post. No wonder you and Hope have such a good rapport. Hope has a grandmother who learned how to be a grandma from the best! (I pretty much had to make it up as I went along.) I loved this.

Linda Reeder said...

I love this post! I get such a warm feeling when you write about your Nana. And yes, she was your model for your own relationship with Hope. I did not have Nana like that, but I try to be one.
Passover blessings to you and your loved ones.

Mike said...

'Nana would feed ya.'

I like Nana already.

Sylvia K said...

Thank you for this one, Dianne! It made me smile and feel all warm inside! I didn't have that kind of Nana either or parents for that matter, but the good thing was making me determined to be there for mine and I was and the joy continues every day. Passover blessings to you and yours and a big hug as well for you and for Hope!

CrystalChick said...

Ah, well ya had to go and mention Jean Nate ... talk about memories! We always had a bottle in the cabinet and I'm sure my mom bought gift sets for an aunt or two over the many years. Yeah, I might have to make a run to CVS for a whiff sometime real soon.
My 'Nan Nan' lived with us, By the time I had any specific memories of her, she'd taken to her small bedroom on a permanent basis. Some medical issues, but retained a decent sense of humor. I admire my mom for taking care of her all the years she did.
Happy Passover, Dianne. Lovely post, thank you.

Jay Simser said...

Well dear you choked me up. - I have to share this.
During one of my many trips to London, I became friends with a very wealthy, yet very modest, Jewish chap named Hyman Goldfarb. On one visit, Hy told me that because of his large donations to charities through the years, the queen wanted to knight him, but he was going to turn it down.

"That's a great honor," I said. "Why would you turn it down?"

"Because during the ceremony you have to say something in Latin," he said. "And I don't wish to bother studying Latin just for that."

"So say something in Hebrew. The queen wouldn't know the difference."

"Brilliant," Hy complimented me, "but what should I say?"

"Remember that question the son asks the father on the first night of Passover? ... Can you say that in Hebrew?"

"Of course," he said. "Ma nishtana ha leila hazeh. Thank you, old sport; I shall become a knight."

At the ceremony Hy waited his turn while several of the other honorees went before the queen. Finally they called his name. He knelt before Her Majesty, she placed her sword on one shoulder and then on the other, and motioned for Hy to speak.

Out came "Ma nishtana ha leila hazeh."

The queen turned to her husband and said, "Why is this knight different from all other knights?"

Chag Sameach!

Love you (and hope and the kitties.

Lily Hydrangea said...

you gave me goosebumps - in a very good way.
Happy passover to you & yours & God bless you & yours too.

OldLady Of The Hills said...

Wonderful post! It brought up so many lovely memories for me of Passovers as a child...Mamaw (My Grandma lived with us)and both she and my mother were fabulous FABULOUS cooks---everything made from scratch---Everything So Delicious!!!
And ALL the warmth of the family on these special Jewish Holidays....!
This was a truly lovely post, my dear....And I wish you and yours a very very Happy Passover!!!
((((((((HUGS))))))))to you and to darling HOPE!

eViL pOp TaRt said...

Such a wonderful tribute to your Nana! She sounded so special and kind. Happy Passover to you!

DJan said...

Such a special post about a special person. I wish I could think of something really special to say, like so many of your commenters already have. But my simple "thank you" for this will have to do. It's wonderful. And the pictures! I love them all. :-)

Daryl said...

loved this post ... got me a bit fa-klempt ... zissen pesach bubbala

Ron said...

Dianne, what a stunning memoir!

You had me touched and laughing at the same time.

"It's terrible. It's like the Chinese restaurant. Every morning I'm going to want an egg roll."

Bwhahahahahahaha! OMG, hilarious!

"The scent of Jean Nate has been with me all day."

Do you know when I read that, I could actually smell it! When I was a kid, my mother worn Jean Nate. Sometimes when I'm in CVS, I'll pick up a bottle; open it and have a wonderful 'sense memory.'

Happy Passover, dear lady!

Love ya!

(((((( You )))))

X

P.S. love the photos!

I'm With Stupid said...

Have a happy Passover babe!

Jay

HermanTurnip said...

Here's wishing you a happy Passover as well! Your Nana sounded like an awesome person :-)

ellen abbott said...

You are lucky to have someone like that to remember.

Happy Elf Mom said...

Sweet! I wisht you had a pic of that egg roll paper. My grandparents had little Chinese men glittery wallpaper with them in a koi pond over a bridge, little writing everywhere and all that. Of course my aunt redid it when they got that house and I miss that stuff. It had real personality!! :)

Katz Tales said...

brrr, snow! Keep warm, and enjoy your Passover.

Jeni said...

Your writings always manage to totally blow me away when you do the memories stuff of your Nana and your family.
On a side note though, before even reading your piece tonight, I had the bright idea earlier today to call a certain someone from my past -the last gentleman I had a relationship with and with whom I haven't communicated at all for about 5-6 years now. Got his answering machine so I figured well, okay, he must still at least be alive. Left a brief message, with my first name and the phone number if he'd be interested in calling me back -just to chat a bit. Well, he did call back but rather shocked me when he said I had apparently dialed a wrong number. However, the caller ID on my phone showed his name and number there. Oh well, it did answer my questions in my mind as to whether or not he was still alive anyway. Peace and enjoy the season -as you said -whether one is Jewish or of another faith, just have a good one!