Here’s what I told her:
Purim is a crazy little holiday. 🙂
Like Chanukah, it’s one of the holidays where we can work and use phones and stuff (unlike Shabbos and some of the days of Passover, etc). Where do I begin?
Basically, there was a King way back when who had a guy, Haman, working for him who decided he hated Jews. And like usual, the guy, Haman, tried to wipe out the Jews by turning the King against them. But what the King and Haman didn’t know was that the Queen (Esther) was Jewish!!! She came, at the last minute, and divulged this little secret, got the guy Haman killed and the King on her side. Jews still had to kick butt because Persian law said a law on the books couldn’t be revoked. But the king was on there side so the Jews triumphed.
Also, the book of Esther which we read on Purim is the only book that does not mention G-d. And so on Purim, we celebrate the hiddenness of G-d, all the mysterious ways G-d helps us and shows love for us.
To celebrate that hiddenness, we even disguise ourselves. And we get drunk, totally drunk, so that we can’t tell the bad guys from the good guys. At night, we go to shul and hear the Megillah Esther, the book of Esther, read aloud and every time the bad guy’s name is mentioned everyone boos, stomps their feet and uses those groggers from New Year’s Eve. And the following morning we read the book again in synagogue and afterwards, we have a big feast where people drink some more!
Most Jewish holidays are about joy, triumph against adversity (you know, how I know about all that) and of course, FOOD!!!!