Letters to Tuvia #20: September 14, 2015

Shana Tovah T,

Our first Rosh Hashanah separated; good thing it was a sunny day!

With a solid night’s sleep I woke refreshed and ready with a game plan.  With Tara feeling better, both of us were up early and ready to meet up in Ridgewood for coffee, but it was so early that on the way, I could stop at an empty Harold’s and be served by all three of the counter guys.  Sad that now there seems to be only one of the original older guys still there.  The younger bucks ran circles around him, more than willing to help him out even if it seemed to humiliate him. No respect for age but what could I say, I was happy to get in and out with the holiday dinner I would be bringing to my dad and Martin in record time. Egg salad, chopped liver, gefilte fish, challah, horseradish, Israeli salad, roasted veggies, chicken soup with matzo balls, chicken, stuffed cabbage, corn pudding potato knishes,honey,  chocolate babka and marble  mandle bread and Prosecco to toast to a new year and to you. You were missed.

I know you would have found very little to eat there.  All the food would be a turn off but over the years, I’ve been so impressed with your ability to just go with the flow and pretend to eat and lots of leftovers for my dad and Martin, who brought two of his own dessert from Cohens.

Success and it was just 8:15 Andrea shared the ride with me into Ridgewood.  My iPhone connection was strong and it was thrilling to hear that she’s been reading my letters to you feeling like we’ve been talking them.  I know you have no concept of what it means to blog and connect the posts to Facebook and Twitter and Google +  but it’s so cool to publish these letters to the world and wonder who is reading them, beside you, of course.

Just as Andrea and I said goodbye Tara was just arriving at the Daily Treat for a bit of breakfast, a long walk in the town’s neighborhoods.  So far, I haven’t been back to the gym, so these walks have been a necessary alternative. What a great way to begin this day, a day I’ve been dreading.

With a few hours to kill before my ride up to Ellenville without you, I took to my chair for reading and napping. All good. I’m back reading The Year of Magical Thinking. Joan Didion is helping me understand the process of mourning.

A trip up to Ellenville and back without you and I had my iPod filled with options.  Barabara Streisand seemed a logical choice but her love songs were just too perfect, just too hard to listen to as I drove.  Laura Nyro was a much better choice.  Her voice, her songs, gritty and wild, felt more authentic.  Pain and passion-perfect!

I arrived, pulled the bags out of the trunk and with Martin’s help got everything into the house and started heating up soup and main dishes and took time to crack open the Prosecco for us.  By 5 we were seated, a few blessings, and let the holiday begin.

It was good to be with Kaplans and a bit easier than I thought it would be.

Two hours for the feast and by 7 I was back in my car with just a few healthy leftovers and back home with music from Laura.  No traffic, and enough energy and one final visit before I was finished for the day.  Dessert with Tara, Scott and their three kids, celebrating a bon voyage dinner for Livy as she leaves for a year in London.

Yes, another day filled with activity.  Yes, it felt constructive and productive.  Yes, I was with family and friends on the holiday.  Yes, it felt good.  But after 20 years of Tuvia and Bonnie celebrating a New Year, it’s just not a new year without you,


Me (just one half of us)


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