So back to my love of holidays…
It’s been 7 years since I’ve celebrated Thanksgiving in the States. I have many fond memories of Thanksgivings past sitting with my mom and grandma early in the morning making – or when I was younger moreso helping with – the pumpkin pie; calamities of the turkey falling on my grandma’s foot mid baste; watching the floats and balloons of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade until Santa made the finale appearance; and stuffing ourselves silly until we almost couldn’t roll ourselves off the couch.
As an adult, I made Thanksgiving once as a vegetarian, and I think my mom still has nightmares of the ‘Tofurkey’. I remember celebrating Thanksgiving in Scotland with a table full of friends questioning why I’d made candied yams as a main course side – surely that’s a dessert?! And of later sharing Scotland Thanksgiving with my fellow American roommate making hand-traced turkeys, before over-indulging in the classic meal.
But since moving to Tanzania, we’ve never had Americans in camp to celebrate with at Thanksgiving. Until now! So although there will not be turkey, there will be a cornicopia of sorts, with foods and plants from the harvest laced throughout. Freshly plucked flowers, amidst long dried grasses, cream corn croquettes, buttery mashed potatoes and a gravy my grandmothers would be proud of, maple glazing (pork, not turkey), culminated with a traditional pumpkin pie and homemade marshmallow whip.
To all of our American guests – past, present, and future – and guests around the world, we wish you a happy and safe Thanksgiving with the people you love, and a joyous beginning to the festive season!