28.11.08

Happy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving. It is during days like this that it really hits me that I am most definitely not in America. Nonetheless, it has still proven to be the most delicious day of the year. The extent of my autumn-ish decorations was this glorious fold-out turkey that my mom mailed me. It sat happily on my bookshelf, next to my twinkle lights. This year, there are no leaves changing color (although my fern is dying so it's turning brown), and no Turkey Trots races to run (although I ran for an hour in the morning).

This year was different. I celebrated Thanksgiving dinner with Americans, Malaysians, Koreans, and Brazilians. Diversity makes for an even more delicious holiday, when everybody contributes something to eat. For example, this was the first year that I have eaten kimchi for Thanksgiving.

Delicious.
But here's what would happen if I were at home for Thanksgiving. this is me reminiscing, again.
Because my family rarely has any family or visitors from out of town, this holiday mostly all about the food. We start the day early with the traditional Treece holiday breakfast, served for Easter, Christmas, birthdays, and any other special occasion: butter marshmallow things (there is no technical name for them, but if you have ever eaten them you know they are DELICIOUS) and something else a little more obscure: vienna sausages. Although they are nothing more than SPAM rolled up like little Smokies, my family grew up loving these. They were a special treat for us, only served at breakfast on special occasions. I only found out recently (like, this year) that most people regard these as "camping food" or perhaps better known as, "survival food". But I don't care what other people think; camping food or not, they are a Treece family tradition and I love them. Anyway, back to thanksgiving. After breakfast, we sit around, watch , probably golf (also a holiday Treece tradition, thanks to my dad) and wait for the appetizers to arrive. We even have a typical order that our food comes in: first the Ranch dip with the potato chips. Then, the artichoke dip. Yumm...my brother and I will sit on the couch and gobble it up until it's gone in like half-an-hour; in the meanwhile my mom tries to convince us to use napkins and not spill on the coffee table. Every once in awhile we have the occasional cheese-ball, but they're the store-bought kind and NOT delicious like the Ranch dip or the artichoke dip. Sigh. After appetizers are over I usually try to to help my mom in the kitchen, but I just end up stirring something and munching on everything. The turkey's already in the oven. The table must be set with mom's bird-china and have the cornucopia and thanksgiving Precious Moments statue in the center. This is mandatory, routine: every year, same table decorations, without fail. We usually can't wait very long so we eat at 4 or 5pm. Sometimes we have real wine, but I much prefer Martinelli's sparkling apple cider: another Treece holiday tradition. We give thanks, then we eat. The stuffing that was cooked inside the turkey always goes first - of course, because it's the most delicious. Oh, I forgot one more thing! The cranberry sauce. The kind from the can. None of this 'chunky-real-cranberry-stuff' but the gelatinous kind that just plops right out of the can and into the bowl. That way you can just slice it off onto your plate...brilliant. Another Treece tradition. I'm not really sure what we usually do after dinner, I'm usually in a food coma so it's all a blur. But we end the night with pumpkin pie (although I've finally discovered, after all these years, that I don't really like pumpkin pie).

After all that is said, however, I called my parents and learned that they ate Thanksgiving dinner out this year. This is breaking Treece-family tradition, but I guess it's a bit different when you only have to cook for 2.

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