Thanksgiving was the Old Woman's favorite holiday. The heavy work on the farm was usually complete. And, sometimes Thanksgiving fell on her birthday. (This year, it falls the day after what would have been her 92nd.) But, she also really liked that there were no gifts to fuss and worry over . . . just food. And, being on a farm, food wasn't a problem.
Quite a few years ago, the Old Woman insisted that I stop coming home for Thanksgiving. Her logic was that I needed to create my own traditions . . . so that after she died, I wouldn't find myself utterly lost on the holiday. It makes sense, right? And, in the years leading up to her death, it was easy to see which of our friends and colleagues were hanging about for the holiday, and have a party.
Last year was the first year after her death. I have no memory of what we did for the holiday. Honestly. I imagine I could look backwards in this blog or ask around . . . but right now, thinking about it, it's as if it didn't happen.
I've already started getting weepy about this year. It didn't help that I watched part of a program on public television about thanksgiving traditions and damn! every single person referenced their grandmother in discussing their recipe or traditions.
So, I'm going for as non-traditional as I can get this year. My menu:
Mexican Deviled Eggs (with jalapeno and avocado)
Grilled Tamarind Chicken Tacos
Homemade Refried Beans
We've invited a friend. He has family in NYC, but doesn't know if he's traveling or not. I'll get up early to make the pie. . . and that's where the tradition will end. I may spend part of the afternoon rolling bourbon balls.
And, I suspect that this time next year, I won't remember this holiday either. We can hope.