23 November 2006

No turkey for me not to eat

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

It's not very thanksgivingy around here since this country does not generally celebrate the holiday, and I'm just here by my lonesome today, but I plan on calling my family in medias res (where "res" = turkey-baking), and I got to talk to M in Honduras via a very wobbly skype connection. This weekend when he gets home (after he finishes up with the--and these are direct quotes of today's agenda items--"lunch with the central American ambassadors" and "meeting with the president of the congress") I'll cook up stuffing or some such in order to reprise the holiday on a smaller scale.

And anyway, when I was in Vermont on Halloween, my mom and my sister and sister-in-law and I made a thanksgiving dinner, so that I could have a taste, albeit while trick-or-treaters were ringing the doorbell and grabbing fistfuls of candy, or, if they were little enough, standing stock-still in wonder that you were actually offering them mountains of gleaming sugar-bombs. For them to take. And then eat. And their parents were letting them, in fact, urging them on. My little nephew, cutest of said little trick-or-treaters, in a leopard costume, got the hang of it after only a few houses despite the tender age of fifteen months. They catch on quick, those kids. Especially when it involves candy.

Looky here, I've gotten on a tangent about an entirely different holiday than the one I started with. Back to thanksgiving. But I guess if you think about it, it's not hugely different than halloween. It's like putting all the candy on the nice tablecloth and the special china and then eating it all at once, to show how thankful you are for the abundance of candy in your life. And I am, to be sure, very thankful for all the candy. Even when I wish we could spread it around the world more fairly, so everyone could have their very own stash.

Here are some of the other things I am thankful for, in no particular order:
(Not such an original list idea on thanksgiving day, but unoriginality will not stop me oh no it won't. Also, my dad usually makes us go around the table and say what we're especially thankful for this year, so here's my contribution from afar. And since it's on my blog, I get to say as many things as I feel like.)

1. Babies. My friends and family keep having them, and I am loving those babies, and wish I could get to know every single one of them. This fall alone, five girlfriends have had babies, or are going to have them very shortly. I feel lucky when I get to spend time with the babies, like the week with cute nephew in October, or weekends in Barcelona with cute nieces, or getting to know a friend's little boy when we were the only Vermonters of our acquaintance to be living in the boondocks of Indiana. Keep them coming! (My sister is pregnant, so she's doing a good job. And the baby is due on my birthday!)

Here's a weird but true fact: In the past two years (well, maybe my memory doesn't go back that far accurately, but at least in the last year) ALL of our American friends and family have had boys. ALL of our European friends and family have had girls. Coincidence? I think not so.

2. This is related to the babies. I'm thankful for the people who are making those babies, i.e., friends and family. And even people who aren't making babies at the moment, or aren't making them any more (i.e. our parents). I know that wherever we are living in the world, it is a beautiful thing to have the love and support of friends, and the love and support of family. Those people who know you inside and out, and so when you describe something in an e-mail or on the phone or online, they can imagine you doing it or thinking it. Because they already know.

3. Being married. These past almost-five months have been so incredibly great, and I feel blessed not only to have found the sweetest and smartest man ever, but, by God's grace, to have married him to boot. And after so long of living an ocean and substantial amounts of solid landmass apart, it is so cheering and lovely to see him every day, and share our lives even more deeply. Even when one of us departs for a trip, the good news is that we always get to come home to each other. Also, this year I am thankful for our wedding day. That it was beautiful and home-spun, and sunny and simple and singing and sweet. When I want to feel happy, all I have to do is think about the details of that day, and how I married the man I love, and how the people I love were there to send us off into weddedness. (Have I used enough superlatives, with a dash of alliteration, in this paragraph?)

4. Technology. OK, that's sort of a geeky and surprising thing to say after all the hearts and flowers of the previous paragraph, but what I mean by it is that technology makes it possible for this whole living-really-far-away from family and friends to be endurable. Witness A: this blog. Witness B: skype conversations with M, and, only moments ago, my family in Vermont, who were about to sit down to a breakfast of eggs and homemade cheese braids. Witness C: airplanes that ferry us back and forth from Brussels to Barcelona to Boston to Burlington (yes, I have already taken note of the fact that the important cities in my life all begin with B). Witness D: e-mails like the one that contains pictures of little nephew and my dad and sis at the computer into which I am talking via skype that just popped into my in-box.

5. I am thankful for a whole lot more besides, but those are the basics. If you would like to know about other things I am thankful for, I can refer you to other blog entries, where I wax cheesy about books and food and travel and language and music, and indicate thankfulness for the big yellow cookbook, the new apartment, the old one, for my job, for M's job, and more of the things I mention above.

6. I am also thankful for a pretty poinsettia, which is sitting on the mantle. I'm getting ready for Christmas.

1 comment:

Robin said...

Phil and Anna,
Glad to see you checked out the site!
You're welcome to visit (Brussels, or Barcelona, or the blog) any time!