It's a ritual that we have practiced every year of my life that I can remember.
When I was younger, my grandmother did most of the cooking and about
20 of us would gather at her house and stuff ourselves with Turkey and
a Southern Cornbread Dressing that would just knock your socks off!
I remember that "we kids" sat at our own table, but it didn't really seem
to matter. We were just having fun visiting with our families. "We Kids"
weren't too far apart in age so it seemed that we all got along. I remember
working up a great appetite playing football out in the yard. I always
enjoyed the cooler weather and that sort of crispness in the air that
we don't often experience here on the Texas Coast.
Life takes little twists and turns, the blues come and the blues go.
As an adult, my mom did most of the cooking, or at least shared it
with her sisters. I remember all of my aunts as being good cooks,
at least at Thanksgiving! Well, most of them anyway...
One Thanksgiving each sister was given a task in the meal preparation.
One would cook the Turkey and probably make a gravy, one would tackle
the dressing, another the cranberry sauce...well, you get the picture.
All of us were to converge on my Aunt Margie's house were everyone
would bring their contribution.
It wasn't until after everyone had eaten that my Aunt Margie exclaimed,
"Well, that was sure easy!" It was as if on cue each of the other sisters
turned and looked at Margie..."Yeah it was easy for you, you didn't have
to cook anything!" Suddenly the room was full of riotous laughter as
Margie realized that all she had to do was eat!
The Blues sometimes come in Huge Waves...
My dad was the first person I lost to death. It was late in September
of 1968. I don't even remember that Thanksgiving. It was as if
Beaumont, Texas has just fallen off the map and taken it with me.
My dad, gone!
Thanksgiving came and went I presume.
We all dreaded Christmas because we were all still mourning
our loss. For me, I had lost my dad, my best friend and the
only person in the world who totally understood me.
Christmas Eve, my dog of 12 years was run over and killed
by the postman.
I was consumed by the blues...
The years don't get any kinder as we age, move away, make
our own lives and build our futures. Life keeps happening
around us all the time in spite of our efforts to keep the hard
times at bay.
I'm older now and I do most of the cooking. But it's only
a table for 4. Our family has gone the way of most families.
But the tradition stays on. That last chance to grasp what
we can while we still have each other. The remaining four
The turkey was moist, the dressing still knocks our socks
off. We are thankful to still be here and to still have each
other, what few of us there are.
All of us have the blues from time to time...