Thanksgiving is always a interesting holiday around here. There is no doubt that, in these times, a step back from the ongoing societal challenges is necessary for all. Thanksgiving comes at a nice time to make it happen.
Unlike other holidays, I’ve never felt that there was a templated approach to celebrating it and this year was no exception. Coming from a large family on my dad’s size, we would celebrate in various locations and times. My mom’s family size was a little smaller but it did get shifted around. A lot of the shifting was about who would hold Thanksgiving and who would hold Christmas.
As we got older, these family events shifted to other times and we celebrated Thanksgiving at home – mostly. When you date a girl from the same town, your parents end up fighting over who got to do Thanksgiving on Sunday and who got the Holiday Monday. That would lead to the inevitable comparisons – whose turkey did you like best? I’ve always prided myself as somewhat smart and would reply “yours of course, Mom”.
University days threw in a new wrinkle. After all, Thanksgiving and Oktoberfest is synonomous in the Kitchener-Waterloo community. Even if you don’t hit the Festhalls, the parade on Monday is not to be missed. That made Thanksgiving shifted a day to Saturday and Sunday so that we could be back on Monday to see the parade.
These days, we’re the parents that host the event for our kids. That’s a new wrinkle trying to find a time that fits into their agendas. This year, it was Monday at noon. We had a great day and nobody left looking for more. But, what were we to do? It was so quiet.
Having polished off the dishes, neither of us were ready to dirty up anything again for supper. Plus, it was unbelievably warm and humid. The thermometer said 29 degrees. Even Jaimie had his tongue out. I had the solution.
“Let’s go for a drive”.
Off we went and headed to Leamington and some of our favourite dog walking places – Seacliffe Park and the Leamington Marina.
I had thought that we might top off the day with a burger from Burgess Refreshments but they were closed. We took a spin by Point Pelee National Park and noticed that Birdie’s Perch was open!
It was a lovely drive, the windows were down and the radio cranked up. For the most part, it was just a chance to look around and be together.
It’s later in the evening as I type this. I just took a quick look through Facebook and see that so many of my friends have been places and taken pictures as part of their Thanksgiving Day activities. I enjoyed seeing what everyone else is do.
There’s very little consistency other than doing something. It appears to be a nice and warm day everywhere I see people who are checking in – on condo balconies, with family, in backyards, in a different province with family, canoeing, with friends, …
So, I guess there is no true rhyme to this holiday. But most certainly, the extra day tacked onto this weekend has been a real winner for everyone.
I hope that it’s done its job of helping you recharge and refocus. And, don’t forget the thanks in Thanksgiving. It is the reason for this day. On our drive, we saw quite a few farmers out on the land working so that we have this benefit. It was a real reminder of what the day is truly about.
I’d like to take the time to thank everyone profusely for dropping by and reading this blog – daily or periodically – it’s so nice to have you drop by as you can.
Thanksgiving was always a special day in both our families. My wife grew up on a farm so there’s that connection. My family interacted with farms through dad’s work and we were fortunate enough to work on farms as kids. Both of us appreciate the efforts that farmers go through to keep us fed. For them, particularly in these difficult times, thank you so much.
For us these days, we’re trying to make memories for our kids and their families. This year will be no different but I will confess that we go with Butterballs rather than picking out a live turkey as the main event.
In education, I still have remembrances of the week after Thanksgiving and how everyone had turkey sandwiches in their lunch bags. To my wife’s chagrin, my favourite take to work was always peanut butter and jam but I did the turkey thing myself.
In education, Thanksgiving comes at such a significant time. After September which is always a busy month, it’s a day to recharge and reload. To those educators who might be reading this, I hope that you’re taking the most from the day off.
And, Thanksgiving wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without a visit to WKRP. This is quite possibly the best clip ever in comedy television.
However you recognize or celebrate Thanksgiving, really do it.
As our world inches closer to a return to reality, we truly have something to give thanks for this year.