It’s going to snow tomorrow. I’ve lived here long enough to expect one last round of snow shoveling in mid-April, and flurries for a few weeks after that. My parents once considered moving here and visited in late April to look at houses. As we were driving to a nearby town with snow blowing horizontally, I knew that Minnesota had lost out on that chance.
I’ve lived about 1800 miles distant from my family since I finished college, and therefore have created my own local “family” and holiday traditions in the places I’ve lived. Our Easter is usually a celebration of spring with our fellowship – music, stories, conversation, laughter, and food. Tomorrow we will meet online with some of theses folks who have watched Mari grow from 3 to 17. Toddler Mari used to hunt eggs on the grounds of the old one-room schoolhouse where we meet, and older Mari used to hide eggs for the little ones. Between the stay-home order and the snowstorm, it might be hard to make it feel festive, so I’m thinking that there will be a mandatory snowball fight in the afternoon.
I was leafing through a book that I was excited to find on the library discard shelf, Anissa Helou’s Savory Baking from the Mediterranean, and landed on Pan di Ramerino, Rosemary and Raisin Bread. When I read that it was an Easter specialty of Tuscany, and saw that it required only ingredients that are available in our pandemic-depleted kitchen and pantry, I decided that it would be our Easter breakfast. Helou writes, “In ancient Greece and later in the Roman Empire, rosemary was used as a remedy for coughs and liver aches, whereas in medieval times, it was used to repel evil spirits.” Sounds perfect all around.
Wishing you a joyful Sunday whether or not you’re observing a holiday, free of both coughs and evil spirits.