1. Is one required to eat bread after the fast ends? (In general and specifically this year)
2. When can one do laundry, take a hot shower, etc. after the fast?
Thank you for your question.
- There is no obligation to eat a bread meal after Tisha B’av, although we don’t eat meat until the next afternoon. There are some people that eat a meal after Yom Kippur as a sort of Yom Tov celebration that Hashem forgave our sins, however that would not apply to Tisha B’av. Even this year when Tisha B’av starts on motzei Shabbat and we don’t eat the melava malka, nevertheless, after the fast it is no longer motzei Shabbat, therefore there is no point in specifically eating a bread meal then.
- Regarding doing laundry and having a hot shower, the custom is not to do laundry or bath until chatzos of the next day. The reason for this is because the Bais Hamikdash started to burn in the late afternoon of the ninth day of Av and continued to burn until close to sundown on the tenth day. The fast is on the ninth day because that is when it started to burn, nevertheless we still don’t eat meat or do laundry until then next day at chatzos.
Best wishes and you should have a meaningful and easy fast.