Monday 8 October 2012

Thanks Again

I guess I should wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving. We had a very nice meal on Saturday and have been bingeing on leftovers all weekend. Being the “older” part of the family is not the same as being “younger” in the same family. The “older” usually will host the meal and the “younger” come to eat the meal. Often the “younger” have two “older” families to share thanks with and end up with near terminal case of sleeping sickness due to over dosing on tryptophan. I guess that they have proven that turkey doesn’t make you sleepy. Better wake all of those snoozing family members up and tell them that they aren’t tired according to the scientists.
I was wondering why we Canadians celebrate our Thanksgiving on the second Monday in October and the Americans have their Thanksgiving on the fourth Thursday of November. I guess it kind of makes sense that we would have an earlier Thanksgiving, because our growing season is shorter and therefore the harvest (the reason for thanks) comes sooner in the higher latitudes. Personally, I think I would rather have a later Thanksgiving which is followed by Black Friday and oodles of sales, just in time for Christmas.
It turns out that Canadians celebrated Thanksgiving long before our neighbours to the south did. In 1578 Martin Frobisher while looking for a route to the orient ended up founding a settlement on what is now Newfoundland and took the opportunity to give thanks for surviving the trip safely. Around this same time, French settlers were giving thanks for a good harvest and invited the local Indians to share their bounty. I guess the lying and stealing of land would come later.
I can remember Thanksgiving feasts when I was a kid. Of course I don’t remember anything about the preparation or the pain in the ass it must have been for the adults, but I do remember good food and hanging out with my cousins. We kids would be able to have pretty much all of the pop and chips we wanted. We would run and play, argue and even fight for a couple of hours before supper. We would play card games and listen to stories that Gram would tell us. Interesting to note and sad at the same time, my Gram passed away on this day in 1987. I think of her often and when I am with my grandkids I try to be as good a grand parent as she was. I fall far behind of course, but she is the yard stick that I use to measure how well I am doing.

Now I am all weepy and sad. I can still smell Gram’s house whenever I go into an antique store. When I see a little old lady dressed in a rainbow of colours I think of Gram. My youngest daughter looked amazingly like Gram when she was a baby and we put a grey wig on her. I have a picture of Gram taken during the war and she was very lovely. Maegan has the same good looks and I think carries some of Gram’s spirit.

I guess I have so much to give thanks for, but right now…at this precise time, I give thanks for having had a great grandmother, fantastic mom and dad, wonderful, loving wife, three brilliant amazing kids and their significant others and of course I thank all of the Gods in heaven and on earth for letting me live to love Hurricane and Tornado. 

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