Friday, November 22, 2013

the indians in the lobby

First of all, let me start by apologizing for not posting last week. After two full years of writing this blog (our on-island anniversary is next week), it’s honestly hard for me to find things to write about, even on a bi-weekly basis. But I’m trying.

When we arrived two years ago on the Monday of Thanksgiving week, we (understandably) weren’t sure about our Thanksgiving plans. We’d just moved to a new country on the other side of the world where we didn’t know anyone. How were we supposed to make plans for a family-centric holiday? We ended up going to a buffet at one of the Officer’s Clubs, where there WAS an ice sculpture of a turkey, but there was NOT a lot of food for us to eat. By the time our second on-island Thanksgiving rolled around, we had a couple of friends, and were lucky enough to share a meal with them and their daughter. We’ll be with them (and a few others) again this year.

Here’s the thing about Thanksgiving, though. I know, as Jews, we often think of holidays as being all about the food, but Thanksgiving really amps that up to the next level. Normally that’s not a problem. Every family has their own traditional foods, and most peoples’ Thanksgiving dinners probably look similar from year to year. I know ours always did. When you’re celebrating in what is essentially a transient community, though, everyone is missing their families/friends/traditions back home, and so whatever plans they have made for themselves, they want their own personal traditions to be honored. And that’s not a problem either – it just means there is inevitably WAY too much food. Yoni and I are going to a meal where there will be 3-5 other adults, and there will be two turkeys. Not to mention a ridiculous list of other foods.

Food mania aside, spending Thanksgiving away from home is always bittersweet. But, seeing as the holiday is actually about giving thanks and not about food, I try to see the sweet instead of the bitter. I’m thankful this year to have friends to have Thanksgiving dinner with; I’m thankful that the temperature in Okinawa has finally dropped below 95 degrees; and I’m thankful for Yoni and Penny, who put a smile on my face and make it okay to call our apartment ‘home.’

No comments:

Post a Comment