Last night we celebrated my father’s 80th birthday. My cousin (who is really my cousin’s husband, but I have known him since I was born, so I call him my cousin), related to us how a person has two kinds of strengths:
One has physical strength or koach at a younger age; one when gets older and the physical strength declines, one then has gevurah. My cousin then proceeded to tell my daughter the story of my father’s life, decade by decade (some of it was made up, since he really only met my father in the early 1960’s when he married my cousin).
After he finished with my tales of my father, I asked him to tell about his mother, z”l. I used to play Scrabble with his mother when I visited; she was like a friend to me, even though she was so much older than me. He started by saying she was born in Germany in 1911. Then he told my daughter: “One day she went to the swimming pool, and the sign said: ‘No Jews or dogs.’ She knew on that day this was not a country for her, and she should leave.” My daughter asked, what if it was a Nazi’s dog, and my cousin just repeated, no Jews or dogs. We soon had to leave ourselves, so the next time we visit with our cousins we will ask for more of her story and more tales of our elders.
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On a separate topic, my husband needs to find more short Jewish stories to tell our daughter. Perhaps someone has some links to some good Jewish stories? She claims she has heard every parsha story there is. Thanks.