Are you Canadian? Or were you anywhere in the vicinity of this vast country this weekend? If so, you might currently be in a turkey coma like I am.
North Americans know all about the annual Thanksgiving food fest. I tried to explain this holiday to our Italian exchange student, Elena, last year. Technically it’s supposed to be about giving thanks. But really, it’s all about eating. Basically you gather up various friends and family, some who travel long distances to get together, and have a feast. Bonus points if you can find some crazy relatives to make it really colourful.
And if you take this North American Thanksgiving tradition and combine it with typical Italian values, “feast” is not really an adequate word. The planning begins weeks ahead of time. No effort is too big. If you happen to hear of a Mennonite farmer 100 km away who feeds his turkeys wild apples, well you just get in the car and go get your family one of those turkeys. And it should be a giant one. If it takes 4 people to lift that turkey out of the oven, even better. Every inch of the table needs to be covered with food. And you should need to add at least 1 or 2 folding tables to accommodate the crowd, or it’s a bit of a bust. If there are grandchildren to feed, the cooking gets a little more frenzied, because those kids need to grow. Everyone talks at once, and it’s got to be loud. The only word you can really make out in all that noise is “Mangia.” You get the picture.
That’s what it was like for me and Nads this weekend at the family cottage. Fifteen people around 1 table. Lots of food. A giant turkey. The best tiramisu you have ever tasted. Lots of loud discussions. Friends dropping by. And some spectacular weather.
I hope you had yourself a great weekend – quiet or busy, lots of food or a little. And that somewhere in there you did take a moment to stop and remember what you have to give thanks for.
Happy Canadian Thanksgiving!