This week Americans will mark Thanksgiving. I love Thanksgiving. I love it for many reasons. I love that it is a celebration, a big family holiday that involves a feast with no religious overtones. I think there should be more of these. Gatherings of friends. Opportunities to meet around a dinner table. Groups of people, larger than you would normally have at a dinner party if it wasn’t a holiday. I live in a tiny one-BR flat in the UK, so I’m a bit paralyzed when it comes to hosting a big T-day dinner. (Where T in my world stands for Tofurky, not turkey. Yeah, that does interfere with the whole turkey day thing a bit.)
I’ve had various experiences as an expat in the UK. It turns out that the English are actually reasonably pro-Thanksgiving. There’s a T-day service at St. Paul’s in London. I’d go, but it would interfere with the other things I have to do that day, sadly.
It’s funny, how the American holidays take on new meaning when you’re not in America anymore. At this precise moment, I’d give anything for green bean casserole. Brits may think it’s disgusting, but I’d take some if it was offered to me. I’d give my right arm at the this time for a vegetable casserole based on Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom soup and French’s fried onions. I know it’s not logical to like these things, it’s like how I love Velveeta and Cheez-its. It’s not rational. It’s tradition. (Cue the guy from Fiddler on the Roof singing.) I’m unabashedly American and my life is complicated. And I miss American holiday food.