Monday, May 23, 2011

A Belated Report: Passover with the Folks

It wasn't that bad.

But let's be fair, it might've been much worse if I hadn't cheated.

By cheated, I mean:
- Ate chometz (yes, lots of it) on Chol HaMoed
- Watched movies on my laptop on Yom Tov in my bedroom

Here's the thing: Shabbos (and by extension, Yom Tov) can be really nice in that it lets you sit and talk to people without the distraction of television, cell phones, internet, etc.. But two days of Yom Tov followed almost immediately by a day of Shabbos followed not so long after by two days of Yom Tov followed again soon after by another day of Shabbos? Kind of exhausting, actually. It may sound funny, but it's gets tiring being so relaxed.

And here's the other thing: I've realized that I really can't do Pesach (i.e., avoid eating chametz) without the belief that there's someone out there (i.e., God) who would punish me for doing otherwise. I detest Pesach food. It might not be as bad if my parents weren't kitniyot and gebruchts-keeping. But still, my diet is generally significantly reliant on dense, filling carbohydrates (read: breads and pastas). And matzah and potato starch (really even rice and other kitniyot) just doesn't cut it for me. I remember that when I was observant, I basically felt hungry for the entire week of Pesach. And let's not even talk about the kind of stomach aches I get from a week-long matzah binge (this actually still happened to me even when the matzah was supplemented with small doses of chametz).

In any case, I stand firm on my previous conjecture that Pesach is my least favorite of the Jewish holidays. (Yom Kippur is bad, but it only lasts one day!) And no matter the pressure applied by my parents, from here on out, I really can't see myself going back for Pesach. (Unless I ever move closer to them again, in which case I could see myself going back for part of it.)

And with Shavuot (a much better holiday, in my opinion) following so close on Pesach's tail, I imagine I'll be able to get away with such a stance. Cheesecake and blintzes, yum!