Friday, February 02, 2007

In A Nutshell

In a Nutshell

A place set aside to answer 201 autobiographical questions
from a mother for her daughter. This may take awhile...join us if you like.

15. What we usually did at Thanksgiving.

Like Christmas, what we usually did is divided into phases. While my father was still alive, we spent part of the day with his mother and brother and part with my mother's Herndon parents, sisters, my Great-grandfather, and Aunt Julia. After we left California, it was a nuclear family holiday, and then when we moved back, we traded with Aunt Flo and Uncle Wes in having my grandparents and Aunt Julia (great-grandpa, sadly, died about then).

The Thanksgiving that stands out in my mind was the one in Puerto Rico, where we invited our next door neighbors, who were from England and had never celebrated an American Thanksgiving before. They brought pies and a side dish or two, none of which was exactly like anything we had ever had before, Mama cooked a traditional dinner, and our maid, Elena, fixed rice and black beans and a desert made with fresh coconut (she drained, broke, and shredded it herself) before she took the day off. It was fun to introduce strangers to our traditions and to have them shape the meal with traditions of their own. And we were very good -- having been warned by Mama, Forry and I didn't say anything or laugh when they pushed some of their food onto their knife to eat it. And, years later, when I was living in Fairbanks amid a number of people who were also far away from family, I remembered and had a Thanksgiving potluck for about 20 of them.

No comments: