Better late than never. On Saturday, the ninth of December, I celebrated Thanksgiving at the latest conceivable date. Since I was on a business trip on the real holiday, and on vacation for most of the two and a weeks between then and now, I had to take some drastic measures. Nevertheless, Anke and I managed to feed ourselves and four guests.
Thanksgiving is rather easy to celebrate in Germany. Although many of the traditional dishes are not part of the local diet, almost all of the ingredients are readily available, despite some differing interpretations on whether or not a Pute is really a turkey, whether or not Preiselbeeren are really cranbeeries, and why the Germans seem to cook every conceivable pumkin dish except pumpkin pie! Even sweet potatoes are to be found, albeit only in more expensive supermarkets, or supermarkets for foreigners.
I heard a neat piece on NPR around the time of the “real” Thanksgiving this year, about how expats pull off their Thanksgivings abroad. It even seems that the other Dan R. celebrated the holiday this year as well. Good show. And he should copyright that bit about Thanksgiving being “all about Americans and Indians coming together, right?”
I can almost certainly say that this will be the last Thanksgiving that we celebrate in this apartment.
I’m quite a supporter of Thanksgiving as a holiday, and even as an idea. I’ve tried to work it into my life as often as possible since I moved away from home, even after moving abraod. Foreigners seem to regard it with a mix of suspicion and curiosity… until they see the food. Interestingly enough, the food is my least favorite part of the holiday. I prefer the company and my guests’ reactions to the large roast stuffed turkey, with all its trimmings.