As we approach Valentine's Day, many of us take a moment to think about those we love most - whether romantic partners, close friends or family members.
Below, SMCT's Leah Mandeltort reflects on one of her greatest loves: her late grandfather, Marek.
My grandfather is* one of my greatest loves. I adore him immensely and remember him as a loving, hard-working patriarchal figure with strong values and morals. Nothing was ever as important to him as good food and quality time with family.
I fondly remember him picking me up from Primary school and taking me to Carlisle Street, Balaclava. Walking hand-in-hand with my grandfather always gave me such pride and joy as he was somewhat a local celebrity for owning a Jewish delicatessen, Mandel’s Deli**. Famous for his bagels, former customers would often stop and spark up a conversation with him, curious to see if he was still cooking.
Although he was retired, his family were ecstatic recipients of his endless cooking talents. He’d invite the extended family over weekly and make us delicious foods such as bagels, gefilte fish, blintzes, French toast and shortbread biscuits. I remember my cousins and I would rally together during our weekly visits to steal the shortbread biscuits hiding in our grandparents' kitchen.