A few months ago, in these pages, I described a brief visit to Los Angeles to attend the wedding of my daughter, Dafna, 42, and
her fiancé, Scott, 36 ("Father of the Bride," July 11). It was a first marriage for both and celebrated without benefit of clergy -- Scott being Christian and Dafna, Jewish.
This drew some criticism from readers who felt that I was amiss in not discouraging my daughter from marrying a non-Jew. One, in fact, reminded me that some Jews sit shiva when such a marriage takes place and regard the offending child as dead. It seemed to me that is a bit strong. There was also a time when adulterers were stoned, but we seem to have progressed beyond that. (More to the point perhaps, how does one tell a 42-year-old daughter whom she should marry?)
Because Australia is situated below the equator, its seasons rebel against the Jewish calendar. Our winter is their summer; our spring their fall. Although Passover's rituals and symbols resonate spring, the holiday is celebrated in autumn Down Under.
"Passover begins just as the temperature drops, days grow shorter, and grapevines lose their leaves," said Jenni Neumann, a New Yorker who grew up in Sydney. "It's rather odd, if you're not used to it, I guess."
Based on "How the Grinch Stole Christmas". (With apologies to Dr. Seuss)
We realized that Chanukah was coming when we smelled the aromas from the bakeries in the Jewish Quarter of the city, where we all lived.