A few thousand miles away, some good folks are neck deep in the preparation of one happy meal. Like all things American, the rest of us end up watching as the big bird is stuffed, roasted and devoured. Wait around long enough, and one gets to hear them whining about the leftovers!
Half the world generally insists on following Uncle Sam around, in all things great and small, right and wrong. And with good reason, some might say. For even in these shaky times, the sheer ubiquity, scale and theatre of their presence on the world stage remains, for the most part, unrivalled. No wonder even 5 year olds on the other side of the globe are conversant in the quaint traditions of Halloween and insist on trooping around on their brooms.
Blame a complete lack of the macabre brand of humour; I am yet to wrap my head around Halloween. But Thanksgiving; I totally understand. For what can be better than enjoying a meal with your loved ones and counting the blessings, that too around a table groaning with food. I would order a slice of that heaven, any day.
Provided, of course, that I did not have to spent the better part of the day – wrestling a Turkey, blitzing berries and bashing tubers. Also, there should be the option of either plucking off pesky relatives from the guest list, or of seating them at the kids table. Thankfully, all these options are available to me.
Borrowing festivities from another culture has its advantages, we gets to customise it to our will, with no strings attached. So even if we were to do away with the pilgrims and pies, if a moment is taken to notice all the good things that seem to have found its way into our lives, it would still be Thanksgiving. And if science is to be believed gratitude is a bona fide miracle worker.
For Thanksgiving in my book is not a tradition; it is just a celebration – a long overdue celebration of gratitude. It could be a list of blessings scribbled on a scrap of paper or a long overdue word of appreciation to a loved one or a simple ‘thank you’ murmured into the ears of the universe.
But these days with our mile long wishlists and even longer working hours to tick off those wishes, there just isn’t enough time to feel grateful. So Thanksgiving, is as good an excuse as any to let the warm fuzzies of contentment wash over. While at it, if you are enjoying a scrumptious spread with family and friends – good for you! Even if you are alone at home, nibbling at the bird a certain colonel lovingly fried and watching telly, despair not. Shoot a ‘Thank You’ for the TV and the colonel, and there you have your very own thanksgiving.