Flashback 30 years ago: Thanksgiving was a holiday I was introduced to after my husband and I came to the United States. The first experience was quite crazy and definitely an exciting one. That explains why three decades later, the memories still stay with me!
The turkey that made its way to the table!
There were six of us in our circle of friends, and we decided to meet for dinner. The star of the show at a Thanksgiving meal is undoubtedly the turkey, so that was on our menu too. The interesting part was that except for one, none of us had baked a turkey before. It was obvious that we were following a recipe for disaster!
The poor bird, after being thawed, lay on the kitchen counter, lonely and ignored. No one had a clue of what to do. I wish Google existed back then to come to our rescue. However, the situation was salvaged by the sixth friend who stepped in to take over. Apparently, he had prior experience of cooking a turkey when he lived in Germany. He was the chef-in-chief who practically did everything. The turkey took several hours to cook, and we were all dying of hunger till we settled down to eat.
There was an excess of food, starting from the huge turkey to the desserts and everything else on the menu. The quantity could have easily fed three times more guests. We had a big pile of leftovers. Any meal shared with friends is full of delight, and this was no exception.
The turkey preparation was good, but even otherwise, I have never taken a liking towards it at any point of time. Coincidentally, the two men in my house are not fans of it either. So down the years, we have always settled for the smaller relative that is the chicken for our Thanksgiving get-togethers!
No way did we shop till we dropped!
It was new information that the Friday after Thanksgiving is called Black Friday. Shops opened in the wee hours and offered amazingly good deals! I was initially pretty excited. Well, two factors conspired, and it was not a pleasant state of affairs!
First of all, stepping out of the apartment early in the morning minus caffeine was not a good idea. Yawning and standing in a long line, waiting for the stores to open, was not a fun thing to do.
Second, prices may have been good, but they were still high by our standards. After all, we were PIGS. A clarification needs to be made here. I am not referring to the animals in the sty. PIGS is an acronym for the Poor Indian Graduate Students! Yes, I know. It’s not flattering at all.
I love to shop, but early morning shopping is something that I have never indulged in ever since!
And finally, a beautiful lesson that stayed on!
What I have cherished the most over time is the knowledge about Thanksgiving that stayed with me. In 1620, the Pilgrims sailed to Plymouth from England in search of religious freedom. The following year, they had a feast to offer thanks for a good harvest that came after a year of hardships. The very essence of Thanksgiving is to count our blessings and to be thankful for all that we have.
Although it is embedded in American history, the story is profound and sends a beautiful message for all of humanity. Gratitude is what we need to foster in our hearts. If we look around minutely, we will find a lot of reasons to be happy about.
Something that I often keep saying is that the strands of gray on my head have not just made me older but wiser too! Through all times, happy and sad, I am grateful for what life has to offer.
Every day that we spend with the people we love is a reward, and every breath we take is a blessing. We need to double our joys by cleansing ourselves of all the grudges and complaints and instead replacing them with positive affirmations and acceptance.
Here’s to wishing all of my friends here in the USA a very happy Thanksgiving!