I have not been home for Thanksgiving since I left to start college.
Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy spending time with my family, and still make the trip back to Wisconsin as often as I can to see everyone. And I love my family’s version of Thanksgiving. This week just isn't a good time. Sure the airfare is expensive and the airports are packed. But that's not the major reason.
You see, in WI the week of Thanksgiving is also the week of deer season. Nearly all of my male relatives are spending this week hunting. More accurately: hunting, drinking, cooking, and playing cards. So if I went home this week I would only get to see my dad and my brother (and the uncles and some of the cousins) at the big dinner, which seems silly.
When I was in grade school we’d all head out to Auntie Kathy’s camp with various side dishes (that got pre-made where there were normal sized ovens). Uncle Ray would be grilling the turkey, someone would be making fry-bread, and last minute reheating and prep would be happening everywhere in the two room building. The hunters would all have met at the camp earlier in the day to do a deer run, and they would get back around two in the afternoon for food. Everyone wore bright orange for outdoor safety whether hunting or not. The afternoon was relaxed and informal. There were a lot of laughs, a lot of stories, and a lot of hugs.
I am thankful to have such wonderful memories.
I am also thankful for all of the various “orphan’s” Thanksgiving potlucks I have attended over the years with friends in multiple states.
I am grateful for the years I celebrated Thanksgiving as a strictly solitary holiday, making a solo dinner.
I am grateful to be going with J back to his dad’s this year – to be joining a new family in their Thanksgiving.
However you celebrate Thanksgiving, whoever you celebrate Thanksgiving with, I hope the day is one to remember for all of the right reasons.
@@@This is my entry for week 10 of LJ Idol – the topic is ‘giving of thanks’. This is a free week – so there is no voting, just writing and sharing. In fact – anyone who wants to write on the topic and link it at community.livejournal.com/therealljidol/2