Purim. First Leining with Megillah
My megillah turns out to be kosher. I've never learned how to lein it, so I just read along with others. But a few years ago, I bought a nice old megillah, with some minor decorations between the columns, 11 lines, Ksav Ari, Hamelech. It's faded in spots, particularly the first panel, and was repaired with blue ink on a couple of letters, so I wasn't sure if 'twas still kosher. Sure, I've learned the relevant gemaras and codes, and know that once a megillah was kosher to begin with, it's very difficult to ruin it. Still, it was nice to have it confirmed.
A woman came in after davening, having missed the leining (we started at 7 AM), so everyone could get mitzvot out of the way before Shabbat prep began). Some people suggested neighborhood shuls with late reading, but it seemed she would not have been comfortable in those shuls. So R' Dr. Mark, who is a baal kriah, offered to lein if a megillah could be found. And I had the megillah. I offered it, with the caveat that I didn't know if it was kosher. He ran through it, pointed out a couple of potential trouble spots, and said it was fine. So he leined for her, and she rattled a gragger at appropriate times, and I said the appropriate verses out loud, and a fine time was had by all. Mark did the last verse to the theme of Magilla Gorilla, which he said he was sort of hesitant to do at a public reading, but for a private reading, why not. He also did the antepenultimate and penultimate verses to the tune of Gilligan's Island, for the "iyei hayam" (islands in the sea).