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Accepting

Malka Katzman

“Who wants noodles?” “ME!” the unanimous cry comes from around the table. I count again; I think I had a mistake before. There’s Shloimy, Sarala, Liba, Naomi, Ari, Elchonon, Tzippy, Mendy, Shany, Chezky, Yochie, wait — who just slunk out of their seat? Oh, well, I lost track again.

Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Shany’s mother places a huge bowl of noodles and tomato sauce in the middle of the table, and Naomi, the oldest, spoons some onto her plate and passes the bowl to Shloimy. Shloimy takes and passes it to Liba, who then passes it to Chezky, and who passes it to Yochie, who passes it to Tzippy, who passes it to Ari, who passes it to Sarala, who passes it to… The bowl reaches my seat and I take a spoonful and pass it to Shany. “Oh, come on, Rikki,” Shany says. “You won’t finish it — do you see the bottom of the bowl yet? And there’s more in the pot, trust me!” She turns the bowl and lets a string of noodles slide onto my plate. I eat happily, smiling at all the slurping and chewing and chatting sounds around me. It’s almost like eating in a class, except that here there are no desks or monitors… or a bell ending all the fun. The fun goes on here all day long.

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