The first time I visited Israel, February and March, 1998, I was astounded one afternoon to be walking down the street in Jerusalem…seeing children in what looked like Halloween costumes.
They were walking along, looking exactly like kids back home “trick or treating.” I was so ignorant of Jewish history, I didn’t know I was seeing an expression of a memorable event.
In the Bible’s book of Esther, we find the story of Jewish exiles living in the Persian Empire. Haman, an enemy of the Jews, plotted to wipe them out. However, Queen Esther, in a position of influence at precisely the right moment, intervened.
Obviously, the story from the book itself is far more interesting than my previous paragraph, but you get the idea.
My own brief experience with Purim was one of those surreal moments when you wonder if you’ve taken leave of your senses. Yet I will always remember that scene, and now enjoy learning even more Jewish history.