“Doug?” came Linda’s voice from just outside the front door.
“Yes, my dear, what can I do for you on this lovely Thanksgiving morning?”
“Get out here and help me haul in the paper.”
Oh, I might have made a little bit of that conversation up but only to dramatize the size of today’s Argus filled with Black Friday ads. The poor delivery kid’s weighted-down car made sparks in the pre-dawn darkness as it scraped the drive-way backing out. Leave it to retailers and ad men to turn what used to be a joyous time of Thanksgiving with family, food and football, into a mere prelude to the more important event in which people, wild for Christmas gift bargains, will go without sleep to plan and carry out a shopping strategy that will put them toward the front of the frenzied pack bursting through store’s front doors in the wee hours of Friday.
It wasn’t our turn to host Thanksgiving this year but I really don’t mind when it is. I love the challenge of putting the menu together then trying to coordinate everything so it’s ready when our 25 guests (mostly Linda’s family) arrive. As our huge bird was browning in the oven last year, I was on the internet watching videos of how to properly carve a turkey. It worked out great; much better than the hack jobs from years past. I love the way our little house smells when the loaded-down oven is filled with food cooking away; the oak table that came from my folks, is pulled out to the max so three leaves will fit in; the windows steam over because of all the moisture escaping from the big pot of potatoes bubbling awayon the stove. Time to get ready.. I love the way Linda looks when she emerges from the bedroom in her holiday attire and basking in the aroma of Red Door..my favorite perfume. I love the popping sound a cork makes when it’s freed from a bottle of pinot noir and the clink of our glasses as we drink a toast to the holiday and each other. I love it when people start showing up bearing even more food for the occasion. I love hearing the “Happy Thanksgivings” and experiencing the hugs..especially from grandkids most of whom graduated from the kid’s table years ago.
No, we’re heading across town for Thanksgiving this year to a much bigger house filled with the same folks we care so much about and are so thankful for. Linda is bringing a blueberry salad and I’m making “Doug’s corn”..which is nothing more than canned corn mixed with eggs,Jiffy corn muffin mix, canned onion rings on top and baked in the oven. I made it for a Trudeau gathering when Linda and I were first married and I think her family was so shocked at a Norwegian man in the kitchen they keep asking for it so I won’t feel bad. Oh, they say they like it but they’re nice people. So, with stomachs growling we’ll stand together and offer up prayers of gratitude and then dig in.
Linda and I send to you our best wishes for a most happy holiday and be sure to yell out a “hello” when you see us in the early Friday morning black madness that is the mall.