WeWriWa—First meal of freedom

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Welcome back to Weekend Writing Warriors and Snippet Sunday, weekly Sunday hops where writers share 8–10 sentences from a book or WIP. This week’s snippet comes right after last week’s, when 17-year-old Adrián and 18-year-old Emánuel were brought into a safe house under the protection of Czech partisans. One of the partisans just promised to fetch a doctor.

Egyptian olives and olive oil, Copyright Dina Said

The tallest partisan spoke to the four partisans who were already in the house, and two of them ran off.  The third partisan from the forest, a brunet with one blue eye and one green eye, rummaged around in the small pantry and came back with a bottle of olive oil.

“Both of you are really malnourished, and it’s best to give an empty stomach a protective coating before sending down heavier foodstuffs.  We’ll give you tea, mashed potatoes, and chicken broth after this.”

Emánuel grabbed the bottle of olive oil, let a generous amount drizzle onto his tongue, and gulped it down.  He then passed it to Adrián, who started to reach for it with his right hand.  A wave of pain shot through his shoulder and radiated down his arm, resulting in a loud gasp.  He dared not scream, either in front of these tough older guys or from fear of the wrong person overhearing.  Adrián took the bottle with his left hand and drizzled olive oil onto his tongue, then swallowed.

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One of my Sephardic friends told me about the custom of breaking the Yom Kippur fast with olive oil, for the reasons explained above. After not eating, or barely eating, for a long time, the body can’t just immediately adjust to normal food. The olive oil is a transition between fasting and regular food.

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11 comments on “WeWriWa—First meal of freedom

  1. Author Jessica E. Subject says:

    Oh, I didn’t know that. How interesting. And a great snippet!

    I forgot to sign up this week: http://www.markofthestars.com/wp/weekend-writing-warriors-63-jager/

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  2. SueBarr says:

    I did not know about olive oil either. (filing it away for future use) Thank you for the snippet. I liked the imagery of pain radiating down his arm. Well done.

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  3. Interesting detail about the olive oil. I feel sorry for poor Adrian! Another intriguing snippet….

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  4. I’m an olive oil devotee, so this only adds to my affection for it.

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  5. I’m glad to say I’ve never had to do this. Olive oil is so very useful.

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  6. Ed Hoornaert says:

    I know you have to be very careful when breaking a fast, though I didn’t know about olive oil.

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  7. Interesting about the olive oil. 🙂

    Happy Passover, Anna. 🙂

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  8. Jenna Jaxon says:

    Great snippet to know about olive oil. Makes great sense, though. I hope the food helps them out. Especially Adrian, who is in pain. Food helps everything.

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  9. Karen Michelle Nutt says:

    Interesting tidbit about fasting and the olive oil. Enjoyed the snippet.

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  10. The olive oil was a nice twist. Great scene!

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  11. I hope that olive oil works, because I’ve read some horror stories about what happens when you give food to someone who’s been starving too long!

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