Making Thanksgiving Memories
So sometimes traditional days don’t work. Finances don’t allow getting home for the holidays – it’s a worry covering things sometimes but seems to happen. I think of Thanksgivings past – good ones, not as good ones. This one is different.
Different isn’t necessarily bad. Sometimes it’s just different. Scoutman is working today at the Cracker Barrel – we’ve yet to get in for a meal there, and from the looks of the parking lot earlier no one will miss us! A passing look this morning brought a post about some wood someone wanted removed. With the continued blessing of the truck, Connor and I went and brought two loads of much needed heat home – cold is coming! We stopped on the way back with the last load to get a few things for what some might think is a meager meal. A few ham slices was out of the budget, but a small can of ham, potatoes, cheese, stuffing, rolls…we’ll eat well, if not traditional, tonight. And ice cream for dessert (it was on sale!). Less than $8 makes things stretch…so much to cover.
A Hand Up for Food Choices has been started…maybe allowing to make a difference for others next year too. Some ideas for direct purchase support were mentioned earlier, so it’s a time of reflection, yes, but looking forward too. This year is different.
It’s another year not able to spend it with my mom, and remembering the last one that we were together, driving from Flagstaff, Arizona to my brother’s friends near Phoenix. Connor was in diapers, his mom was healthy and things were far from perfect but good.
Another unusual Thanksgiving was the hostel in Santa Cruz, California. I visited one year, heading down with a fellow hostel visitor to southern California to visit sister Paula, who was up in the middle of the night to make her dollars go further shopping to get cool gifts for everyone, who probably were not really appreciating what she did to make it happen. The following year she’d moved, I was still in Santa Cruz but working at the hostel – and although we were to be closed mid day, a collection was taken and ingredients for an unforgettable Thanksgiving. It was the year I learned vegan stuffing was different from stuffing!
There were several folks gathered, some I haven’t seen since. A few from England, one from Argentina, one from Wales and a mix of New Zealanders, Australians, Americans. It was a bit of a free for all after dinner, poking fun at each other and ourselves, laughing until our sides hurt for days.
One of the American guests was a vegetarian who was pulling sprouts out of a jar. He said it really angered him the self righteous PeTA kind of vegetarians saying people shouldn’t kill food to eat. He held up the jar – “I’m eating mine ALIVE!”. I hadn’t really thought of it that way before. Another visitor, from England, piped up saying he just didn’t like the taste of meat, while the Argentina visitor told of asking for a butcher shop in veganized downtown Santa Cruz, and the stunned looks. She thought they didn’t understand so she was describing it, which as one might imagine did not foster communication!
A couple of globetrotters told of their currency comparison – a can of coke or McDonald’s burger. Of course Thanksgiving is a uniquely American holiday this time of year, so some of us shared our views and being away from family and friends, which of course they related to.
Common ground. Making memories. My sides still twinge just thinking of that Thanksgiving and I have to smile. It was meetings in passing – we tried staying in touch but moving and all connections were broken. Memories last.
For many, the holidays are changed. Sometimes it’s finances, sometimes location, sometimes other things. We all have something to be thankful for.
Happy Thanksgiving dear readers. Thank you for continuing to read these ramblings!