Thursday, November 20, 2008

Making A List

I made my list today.  Including my nephew the Marine and his two buddies that will join us, I'll host 28 people for Thanksgiving.  I do it every year and always rely on those coming to bring a dish to share.  It makes it interesting and and less stressful.  Since I've been a vegetarian most of my life, I am always thrilled when my friend offers to make and bring the turkey.  Watching her surgeon husband carve it is something to witness and has become a part of the ritual over the years.  Her mother-in-law makes homemade cranberry sauce and soup and mine is in charge of the champagne.  Although two of my kids will not be with us, having a houseful to share in the gluttonous day of gratitude will be fun and comforting.  
After all, who doesn't love Thanksgiving?  It's a story any third grader can tell you and is part of the culture we claim as our own.  It's about people getting along and making room for one another.  It's about tolerance and acceptance.  America, with all its imperfections, is as pluralistic as a nation can be.  It was the Natives who helped the pilgrims survive that first year. The pilgrims set ground at Plymouth Rock on December 11th, 1620 and their first winter was devastating.  Unfamiliar with survival in a foreign land they lost 46 of the original 102 that sailed on the Mayflower.  But the harvest of 1621 was a good one and the remaining colonists decided to celebrate with a feast that included 91 Native Americans who knew what is was like to be persecuted for simply being who you are.  
And so, we'll travel miles to get there at one in the afternoon or five in the evening.  Some of us will choose to spend the day helping to serve others that don't have a home to go to.  Some will invite strangers or those new to the community to share in the meal and others, they'll go out because it's just easier.  Any way you slice it, it's truly an American ritual of sharing, caring and community that ultimately celebrates freedom, something we all believe in.  Something, that makes us proud to live where we do.  

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

We are very fortunate in America and Thanksgiving is a day of "thanks".