A Foreigner's First Experience of Thanksgiving In America
Start writing a post
Lifestyle

A Foreigner's First Experience of Thanksgiving In America

754
A Foreigner's First Experience of Thanksgiving In America

The English do not celebrate Thanksgiving. This was my first Thanksgiving, and boy was I excited. Not only was there no school, but there was going to be food, and apparently lots of it. There was hype all around campus; people making plans for Thanksgiving, people meeting family, people talking about the food, and everyone just excited for the holiday atmosphere. It was an easy anticipation to pick up. 

Now over on the other side of the Atlantic we know the basic story; the pilgrims and the Native Americans shared a feast - and there was lots of food, but that's all really. I wasn't going back to England to visit my family for a celebration some of them never heard of, so my roommate invited me to her home in Miami. 

I was excited to learn more about the American tradition. And believe me, I was blown away. I'd never seen so many family members all in one place before, (except maybe my aunt's funeral, but that's a little different). The entire house was filled with them, and they were all getting along, exchanging stories of their experiences they'd had while they were separated; or exchanging recipes for the delicious starter we were all nibbling on. 

Then the eating started, and when I say the eating, I mean lots and lots of eating. It was like a Publix transport truck had flipped and all the food had poured out on the table. I couldn't open my eyes wide enough to take it all in, but that wasn't even the end of it. Emerging from the kitchen was possibly the biggest body of bird I'd ever seen, and somewhere behind it was the lady of the house. She set it on the table in front of me and a closer look revealed it was more than one bird. It was combination of turkey, duck AND chicken, called a churduken, or as I called it, a vegetarian nightmare. 

Even with all this food to fill up mouths, the conversations kept flowing. Discussion of an upcoming event called the Superbowl (I assumed it was a food eating competition) started as I was handed - what was that?! It was mini-marshmallows...on top of potatoes? No, sweet potatoes? Was it a desert? No, they said it was a casserole. A sweet tasting casserole? I'd never heard of such a thing. I took a tentative bite and threw off my precautions. It was amazing - a sweet potato casserole. I took a napkin and wrote that one down. 

I looked around then, and realized that Thanksgiving was more than just food, it was also about family, a chance to join together again, much like Christmas for me back home. In fact, it was a very similar environment (minus the presents, but I made do), and I started to admire Americans for creating another reason to celebrate the coming together of people. After all, we don't get to see the people we love as often while away at college. Of course I wasn't thinking that at the time; I was more afraid to move for fear of accidentally popping my expanded stomach.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Content Inspiration

Top 3 Response Articles of This Week

Meet the creators making their voices heard on Odyssey.

405
Top 3 Response Articles of This Week
Why I Write On Odyssey

At Odyssey, we're on a mission to encourage constructive discourse on the Internet. That's why we created the response button you can find at the bottom of every article.

Last week, our response writers sparked some great conversations right here on our homepage. Here are the top three response articles:

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

"Arthur's Perfect Christmas" Is The Perfect Holiday Special, Move Over Charlie Brown

Arthur Read is here to deliver the real meaning of Christmas.

1666
Pexels

As the holiday season draws nearer, many of us find ourselves drawn to the same old Rankin-Bass Christmas specials and the perennial favorite, "A Charlie Brown Christmas." However, I would like to suggest an overlooked alternative, "Arthur's Perfect Christmas." It is a heartfelt, funny, and surprisingly inclusive Christmas special that deserves more recognition.

Keep Reading... Show less
Reclaim Your Weekends From The 'Sunday Scaries' With 'Self-Love Sundays' Instead
Olivia DeLucia

Laid back and taking it easy — sometimes that is the motto we all need after a busy week. Sunday scaries? Yes, they are valid – but you know what else is? A Sunday full of self-love. A lazy Sunday spent doing what you feel needs to be done to ease into the next week. Self-Love Sundays are a guilty pleasure that isn't only essential for our mind, and body, but are also a surprisingly proactive way to devote the upcoming week with a clear mindset.

So, what is a more suitable way to dedicate your week's end than a beautifully, connected playlist to accompany your face masks and journaling? Cheers, to a Self-Love Sunday (and a playlist intertwined with it to match). (Please note: "Sunday Morning" isn't included in this list, due to the obvious, but feel free to blast it anyway, we know you want to).

Keep Reading... Show less
Sunset Girl

The sun rose and peeked through the sheer curtains. Rose’s alarm shrieked. The loud bells caused her phone to jump on the side table. It was time for her to get ready for church. Blindly reaching for her phone, she shut the alarm off and pulled at the covers providing her a cocoon of warmth and tossed them to the side. She swept her bare feet across the bed to touch the cool wooden floor.

Rose softly tiptoed to the corner of the bedroom to grab her clothes dangling on the arm of the bedroom chair. Scooping all of the items of her chosen outfit, she headed to the bathroom hoping that she wouldn’t drop anything.

Round, piercing blue eyes stared back at her in the bathroom mirror. Rose fingered the wrinkles forming around her eyes. So many of them bore signs of laughter and smiling. Slowly dropping her hands, she couldn’t remember the last time she laughed in her home with Tom. Shaking her head as if to erase the negative thoughts, she reached for her makeup bag and went through her regular routine.

Applying her favorite deep rose lipstick, Rose headed downstairs to make her coffee and bagel to take with her to church. The smell of dark-roast coffee swirled in the air as Rose sliced her cinnamon raisin bagel. Hearing the Keurig sputter with the fresh brew, Rose found the interruption of the stillness comforting. The toaster signaled that her bagel was done with a soft pop. It had a delicious golden brown color. Placing the bagel on the counter, she generously spread honey nut flavored cream cheese across both halves. Gathering her bible, notebook, and pens from the side table on the porch she stuffed them into her purse. Purse hanging on her right shoulder she juggled her coffee and bagel in both of her hands as she headed to the garage.

Keep Reading... Show less
Environment

This Holiday Season, Choose To Be Eco-friendly And Reduce Pollution

Many of us have old magazines lying around, fully read and not of much use anymore. However, we can use their bright colors and prints as a stylish and trendy wrapping paper!

1557
Presents

It can be overwhelming to see the detrimental effects of climate change and pollution on the news, from animals dying and forest fires spreading, but there are smaller changes that we can all make to reduce our carbon footprint, and it begins with our gifting season.

On average, Americans throw 25% more trash between Thanksgiving and New Years, which translates to 25 million tons of garbage. That's 1 million extra tons per week.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments