Paterson (Don’t Miss This)

Mother’s Day is one of those holidays. It doesn’t mean much. it’s Hallmarkish. It should be All Women’s Day. Or All Everyone’s Day. And the Mother Thing no matter what everyone tells you is Very Very Hard. Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum wrote a beautiful piece if I were more skilled (Aha) I’d put it right here dedicating it to those people whose mothering and mothers were painful and difficult. For Mother’s Day I try to go to Paterson, New Jersey. It was Peter’s idea years ago. Paterson, which is a complicated town of poverty, immigrants, Arabs, Latinos, and Lou Costello (really) a town of a famous poem and the old silk factory (and the famous silk strike) Paterson is a place that always makes me happy because there’s a fantastic Syrian bakery there that sells my favorite Zatar bread, called NOURI BROTHERS. (Don’t Miss This if you like Zatar bread). We buy olive oil from Lebanon or Jerusalem, and olives and a big big big bag of pistachio nuts and Zatar bread.

Nouri Brothers market and Syrian bakery
999 Main Street

Fattal’s Syrian Bakery
975 Main Street

Krichian’s Grill & Bistro
399 Crooks Ave

The kids met us at Nouri Brothers
on Main Street
and they bought olive oil too.
Why is buying olive oil
always such a Good Thing
then we all four of us
ate a pre meal snack
in Fattal’s Syrian Bakery
down the street
before going to
Armenian restaurant
about a mile away
right next door to
an Arab restaurant
doubled as a car wash
you could have your car
washed while you ate
but we chose instead
to go to a place that
looked like it was in
a small village in Armenia
and we all four of us
ate and ate and we were
all happy because there
we were in Paterson

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