On the first morning of Yom Tov, service commenced as expected, at 10:00. There was no problem whatsoever about our “usual” songs. As soon as I started “ho’aderes vho’emunah” the Rebbe banged his fist on his shtender and that was all that was required for everyone to join in! I had developed a cold, which affected my voice. I could just about croak (some said my voice was better that way). Fortunately, my two assistants, Tzvi and Lou, were on top form and helped me to start and sing the rest of our repertoire.

That afternoon, Tzvi brought me in a small bottle of medicine which was guaranteed to cure my cough. It contained 90% alcohol and one small teaspoon at a time was the limit. Tzvi said he always kept a bottle handy at his home. I suspect that he makes kiddush on it - no wonder he is always laughing!

It poured with rain all Yom Tov. Nevertheless, in true Lubavitch tradition, on the afternoon of the first day of Shavuos, thousands of yeshiva boys and men set off on their regular march to the Borough Park neighborhood at 6:00 p.m. in the teeming rain.

Mincha was at 8:00 p.m. and the shul was almost deserted. I reckon the Rebbe was delighted to see only fifty people present at this minyan.

It was a pity and a shame that I had a bad cold and a bad leg. If I had gone marching I would have had a much worse cold, two bad legs and one very angry wife.