Last night we lit up the 7th candle on the Chanukiah. We went to a friends’ party in cologne and in the end we were nearly 30 people on approximately 27 square metres, so it was kind of cozy and again I met a few new and a few old friends. At this point I reflected a lot about Chanukah…
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This is, what I like about Chanukah. You have different traditions wherever you are. It is more relaxed, because you have eight days and you can meet with the people you want to celebrate whenever you like. You don’t have to squeeze everything into a few hours. You also experience so many different ways of living the tradition. The only obligation seems to be to light up the candles and to eat latkes. You just enjoy the time with people that are important to you in the way that seems to be proper for all of you. Despite the traditions, you are very free in what you do and how it is happening. You can celebrate with your family, but you can also party with your friends. You don’t need to bring presents, but of course you are allowed to. That’s the spirit, isn’t it?
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But after seven days there is one annoying thing. You are kind of obligated to eat latkes. The next time I have to eat latkes I will punsh someones throat. After seven days I cannot stand potato pancakes anymore. But the warm cider we had yesterday was amazing. This is something I have to put into my Christmas repertoire. You should think about it as well.
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When everybody arrived, we lid seven candles and sang a few songs. While I at least tried to sing songs in Hebrew, I rocked the dreidel song in english (I wrote about in: My third Chanukah light – dreideltime). After that we played secret santa with American rules. They are pretty easy. Everybody gets a number and one after another you can choose to take a present from the present pile or to steal it from someone else and he has to choose a new gift from the present pile. Afterwards that we played jeopardy, jewishstyle. It was a really nice evening and we had to go far to early.
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Today is my last day of Chanukah. So tomorrow I will write my summary about my experience. I hope you will like it.