Bay's Travel Blog

I don't travel much any more. Resist!

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Kickin' off the hollerdays!

Ahhhhhhhh, Thanksgiving. I do love it so. Not my most favorite holiday of the year, but darned close to the top. And you can't argue that the food isn't divine. A traditional Thanksgiving menu is too fabulous to be repeated during the year. Say goodbye to your diet and enjoy!

Our Thanksgiving this year is bittersweet in many ways. Amy isn't coming home, so I'm not cooking the usual dinner. I always do Thanksgiving at my house. Well, I used to always do it here. Why? Because I'm picky. I'm just plain picky. There's no other way to put it. I like the menu that we've developed over the years, and I like the way I prepare it. I can cook a mean turkey. I've never once served a dry, tasteless turkey in my entire adulthood. Apparently, that's not an easy task, considering that many people I know can't manage to roast a juicy, yet fully-cooked turkey.

And just to hedge my bets, I always serve gravy with that well-roasted turkey.

To me, a Thanksgiving without gravy just isn't a civilized meal.

Aside from the bird, we always have Wesley's stuffing -- a divine concoction of cornbread and sausage -- green beans and horseradish sauce, mashed potatoes, Amy's sublime broccoli casserole, honey-baked ham, yeast rolls, a jello "salad" with cream cheese and pineapple, and for dessert -- Mama's pecan pie and a pumpkin pie for the kids.

Now, that's a meal.

And nobody else puts it together the way we do -- when we're all together.

If you go out, the chances are good that something is missing. Nobody does the horseradish thing for green beans. And let me tell you, it beats regular green bean casserole all to snot.

Two years ago, Amy moved to Las Vegas. She and her husband came home for that Thanksgiving, and we all opted to dine out. That was a huge mistake. The food was terrible! But the company was good.

Last year, the food was good -- with the notable exception that there was no broccoli casserole -- but I missed Amy so badly that it was just a horrible day.

I'm giving up this year. Amy's staying in Las Vegas again due to unavoidable work schedule conflicts. My poor, dear brother-in-law has to work so hard! Amy can't help it. She's staying there and dining at a Mandalay Bay restaurant. And I? Well, I will not repeat last year and try to do all that cooking for so few people.

We're going to my mother-in-law's house for Thanksgiving dinner.

I have, however, learned some lessons. I can't go two years without the *real* Thanksgiving menu, so I'll be trying to cook it for Christmas. Amy will be home for that holiday, and we'll be all together, and that's what really matters.

Sure, I'm a little worried. Christmas is by far my least favorite holiday, due entirely to the fact that it is hectic and chaotic and Wesley has a huge family that expects us to drop everything and go to their many houses five or six times during the two days that comprise that event. I wish Christmas were more like Thanksgiving, when I don't have to do anything except stay home and cook. For Christmas, you have to cook, clean, decorate, shop, wrap, cook some more, clean a lot more, answer the doorbell, and drive to Athens 18 times in two days.

My dream Christmas? Desert island.

With a cable modem.

At least I know I'll have one good holiday meal this year. I just need to wait a month to enjoy it.


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