Passover is the 8 day celebration of the Jewish people being freed from slavery in Egypt.
Last year to celebrate passover in the US Maor and I went to dinner at the Rabbis house on the first night where there was a 3 hour dinner then I spent the whole week half trying to avoid bread products, which in the US is not easy.
In Israel there is a lot of preparation before the holiday. Everyone cleans every square inch of their house the week before and goes shopping for new house items, outfits for dinner, and gifts for the hosts.
This morning Maor and I woke up early and went out to buy flowers for his aunt who was hosting the passover dinner. Usually we would drive down town but the roads were a mess. People park wherever they want to get where they are going and everyone was out buying last minute things. Walking to the store I noticed several small fires going on the sidewalk. Very religious people will take any bead left over in their house on the first day of passover and burn it. In the super markets any isles containing bread products or products that arent kosher for passover are completely blocked off by plastic. There is no way for me to cheat now.
Passover dinner is a lot like Thanksgiving... if you have to read the whole story of how the pilgrims came to the US and met the Indians first before you could eat anything. Last year at the Rabbis house the whole dinner took 3 hours because the actually eating goes in between parts of the story.
This year at Maors aunts house the dinner took about an hour. People got impatient waiting for food so as far as I could translate everyone pretty much decided they knew the story well enough and got down to eating.
One part of the dinner I didnt get to see last year was Afikoman because its for children. The leader of the dinner takes a piece of matzo and cuts it into a weird shape then hides it when the kids arent paying attention. After dinner the kids have to go find it and the first one that does gets a prize.
Im not sure what the prize was but it took the kids a good hour to find the afikoman because someone hid it in the bushes outside.