What a beautiful world this is Purim here, Purim there; plus a bonus visit to Palić. The wonderful sunny spring day made it possible for us to take a long walk by the Palić Lake and pay a visit to the Zoo, to satiate our lungs and heats for the forthcoming celebration in the Subotica Jewish Community. The hosts, well known for their hospitality welcomed us in the early hours of the afternoon. After some tasty nourishment the group went off to view the center with the president staying behind as the diligent “overseer” of the final decorations of the enchanting world of traditional cakes and goodies. Soon after other guest began to arrive; the president of the HODMEZÖVÁSÁRHELY.
Jewish Community, Dr. Miklosh Erdeli with a following of some ten community members, the president of the Osijek Community Damir Lajos accompanied by Drago Kon and the children’s theatre, the dependable members of the Zrenjanin Jewish Community headed by their president Ljilja Popov, and the many members of the Subotica community who as custom has it brought the tastiest “homemade goodies” with them. We timidly placed our “fiery water” on the table which somehow seemed to find its way back to Zemun with us. The exceptional service in the Synagogue in keeping with the customs of Purim and abounding with floor stamping and bench drumming each time the name of the hated Haman was mentioned, was an appropriate introduction to the gathering that lasted well into the night. Well aware that within the next twenty four hours the celebration was to be continued in Zemun we said a heartfelt goodbye to our dear hosts and to their bountiful spread. In the evening of March 15, we had a hard time to prepare a table equal to the dainties of the Subotica celebration. Going by the reaction of all present it seemed that we had somehow managed to reach their standard. Our loyal guests from Belgrade, Predrag Kon and Misa Levi arrived well prepared, masked and equipped with rattles in the custom of the celebration, and triggered a clamor of admiration. The rest of the evening was a good example of the proverbial “priest that marries” when the company is right. There was no end to the singing, from traditional Sephardim and Ashkenazi songs to evergreens and unforgettable chart toppers. Ovations followed Misa’s interpretation of the famous Napolitano ''Oh sole mio ''. Lastly, and quite predictably, uncle Peca described in detail his thrill at Marko Kon’s triumph at the Beovizija (Eurovision contest) Festival. Present in person among the public and upon victory in the “backstage” (as the English would have it in Serbian) too, he was given the chance to be in the know and to recount all the spicy stories beyond the reach of the ordinary viewer. For the first time, we can now proudly say that a member of our community will represent Serbia at a prestigious festival. The next celebration is scheduled in Moscow!