Well, another Thanksgiving is in the history books.
We took part in the usual feasting and catching up, and I am pleased to report that no fights broke out. It was good to be together with family.
Quite a variety of food was served, as was necessary considering that among us we had three vegetarians, one vegan (that would be me), three lactose-intolerant, one gluten-free, one diabetic and one kosher.
As my wife does not enjoy turkey, hot dogs were also served. By the way, she made what I can honestly say was the best guacamole I have ever tasted. My sister prepared a wonderful tofu, rice and vegetable casserole. Although I had brought ample amounts of vegan protein with me, I have yet to eat any of it due to the cornucopia of vegan-friendly dishes on the table. My mother-in-law sent two vegan fruitcakes and my niece made two pumpkin pies, both vegan, one of them with a gluten-free crust.
In summary, despite the considerable variety of eating habits in my family, we all ended up happily stuffed.
I particularly enjoyed catching up with my sister, as we had been out of contact for six years. She regaled me with stories about the middle school special ed classes she teaches.
These are just a few things I learned about my family today:
- My niece and her brother, both young adults who still live with their father, are often mistaken for a dating couple. “Why can’t they understand that siblings can care for each other?” she bemoaned.
- My sister’s middle school students refer to defecation as “dropping the kids off at the pool.”
- My other sister is considering taking a temporary position on an Indian reservation in South Dakota. Or maybe she’ll just go to Colorado.
- I have one niece who is currently visiting Israel and a nephew who is traveling around Europe. I had no idea.
- It is possible to have wireless internet service on the fly way out in the country where my parents live, but only if you pay a subscription fee for a dongle. And even then, it is decidedly hit or miss.
- My nephew, who is less than a year out of college and working in Silicon Valley, is being pursued by Google. How exciting!
- I seem to be the only one in the family who knows the Hebrew words to the Hanukkah hymn Maos Tzur (Rock of Ages).
What else? Well, my sister brought her crazy cat with her. This feline goes by the name of Butternut, likes to jump up to high places from which she is unable to descend, possesses a squeak rather than a proper meow, and has a penchant for leaving kitty vomit on various parts of the carpet throughout the house.
And I also learned that we all have different senses of humor, and that jokes told at table have the unfortunate potential for making some of those in attendance uncomfortable. I’ll leave it at that.
When last I left them, my nieces and nephews were conducting high-level discussions regarding who will sleep on the couch, who will sleep on two mattresses piled on top of each other, who will sleep on the floor and whether anyone is going to bother to blow up the air mattress.
I am so happy that we are comfortably ensconced at Motel 6.