Passover is a special time in Jerusalem.
Before Passover you can find almost anything discarded on the streets.
This week I saw an old bed, a new can of flavored bread crumbs,
electrical appliances, and a single, brand-new white shoe out by the trash.
In Kikar Safra, Municipal Square,
a Matzah b’Kikar Festival was held outside City Hall.
The weather was perfect last week for the event.
Among the attractions were
a woman washing clothes by hand,
an old time junk dealer,
a spiffy tailor,
and a vintage photographer.
But the main attraction,
was matzah baking.
It featured four ovens fueled by gas tanks.
Aprons, gloves and perfect timing were mandatory
for those at the work tables in the preparation tent.
Staff in orange vests carried the
used stainless steel rolling pins
to be cleaned of every last drop of dough
between batches of baking matzah.
Dozens of wooden poles were lined up outside,
for the workers to rush the rolled dough to the ovens.
Boxes of the hand-made baked matzahs
were ready for the participants to take home.
It is a shame more people did not take advantage of this
public, free event held over two afternoons.
I’m glad I saw a full page ad in a Hebrew paper,
but I know many heard about the matzah baking too late.
The festival signs were up along some roads,
but it was impossible to read the small print from moving cars.
Baking matzah in Jerusalem, Israel, before Passover,
just one step in preparation for the holiday.