For years my grandmother has attended the weekly ritual of Jewish Shabbat dinner on Friday night, meeting at the Wendy's fast food restaurant near her home in Palm Desert, California.
For over eight years the seniors in her community, most of them in their eighties and nineties, have congregated at the fast food chain to light Shabbat candles, say the blessings and share challah and grape juice (no wine at Wendy's). It is a weekly event and a meaningful celebration.
I had often shared the story with friends in conversation, describing this lovely tradition that she participated in and decided that it was time to document this gathering and her community.
It's a special story and I feel lucky to be able to share it. This is a film about rediscovering the joys of community and the importance of connection in older age while facing the fragility of our own mortality, and the longing for ritual, however unorthodox it may appear.
It’s a short film that may appear rather quirky at face value, but at its core is philosophical. There are themes of love, of ritual and of community -- all within the context of an adorable scene at Wendy’s.