Thanksgiving in a Hurry

I should have clued in to the fact that today was the Canadian thanksgiving when DP emailed me on Friday asking if my job gave me the Canadian thanksgiving off as a paid holiday. I didn't. But I did when he called me Sunday night to ask where in the Vally he'd be able to find a thawed turkey. The answer, of course, was nowhere; give up immediately. I did suggest that he go to the grocery store at 12:01 Monday morning, buy a bird, and thaw it in the bath tub (oh, how many times I've thawed my bird in the bath tub!) and I also suggested that he buy a chicken instead of a turkey. He invited me down to Provo to celebrate and what was really sweet was that when I fairly firmly stated that I would not, in fact, drive down to Provo for his thanksgiving feast, he nevertheless repeated the invitation just as firmly as he had the first time, with almost the same expectation that I would say, "Sure. See you there."

What was really going through my head was whether or not I could really afford to forgo tradition and let the Canadian thanksgiving slip by uncelebrated this year. I grew up in Canada and we were always diligent in celebrating both thanksgivings every year. It's a tradition that the brothers and I carried on here in Utah. But it snuck up this year, just like General Conference did (I mean, the Saturday sessions were in September for heaven's sake!).

As soon as I got off the phone with DP, I went to the living room where El Senor was still diligently working on the floor. I told him that Monday was thanksgiving.

"What should we do?" I asked. "Should we just go ahead and celebrate it? We could always get a little chicken. And some Stovetop dressing..."

And so it was resolved that we would celebrate thanksgiving the cheater's way. I called up the rest of the siblings to let them know that they could come to our house for thanksgiving.

Today I got off work at 4:30. I went to Walmart where I bought three rotisserie chickens, two boxes of Stovetop, beverages, paper cups and plates, potatoes, and pumpkin pie ingredients. I got home by about 5:45 and a whole thanksgiving feast was done by 6:45. I cooked while El Senor did the last touches on his floor. The Boy came before anyone else, and he was juggled between El Senor and me---fishing cables through walls and base boards one moment and mixing together pumpkin pie filling the next. But really, it has to be said again: We threw together a thanksgiving feast in one hour.

At the end of the night, when everyone was gone, El Senor thanked me for my work in putting together the meal today. I told him that it was certainly the fastest thanksgiving meal we've ever done and he said, "You know, it's a 500% improvement in time and only a 20% decrease in food quality..." No, we won't skimp on tradition in the future. But we'll always remember that in a pinch, thanksgiving can be done in an hour.

[Bath tub thaw in Rome, 2003]


Stupidramblings said...

When I was in Spain, we just went with cornish game hens (though they could have been roosters). They bake very well, and they only take about an hour to defrost in water. Plus buying turkey in Spain is not done.

Last year I told ramblimom to relax on Thanksgiving and assign all the chilluns to bring something. She did. She didn't work all day, we had plenty to eat, there were few dishes, we all enjoyed ourselves over games in stead of over stress, and the whole thing took less than an hour of cooking for each family (except the turkey of course).

Thanksgiving is best when tradition is forgone. (If by tradition I mean ramblimom spends all of her time serving the rest of us).

One final note: I'm not sure because I'm a hauty american from south of the border, but Thanksgiving in Canada is the 12th. They only observe it on the 9th this year because they celebrate on a Monday near the 12th. So, by my estimation, you still have time to have a true tradition-laden Thanksgiving. AND on a Thursday where Thanksgiving belongs...

Cicada said...

SR: Thanksgiving in Canada is the second Monday in October. Sorry to say, it has nothing to do wih the 12th except that the second Monday in October is always somewhat close to the 12th.

Also, the only reason we were able to get the turkeys is that one of the senior elders in our mission had cancer, so he and his wife would travel to the American military base regularly. Every time they went, they picked up a ton of American food and then brought it back to the office to sell at cost to the missionaries. Our zone bought two turkeys and I shoved them both in a rather large backpack and traveled with them for about two hours. Because I'd done several thanksgivings in my life, I was put in charge of our zone's thanksgiving dinner.

This year for the American thanksgiving, we'll go back to our normal tradition---that is the tradition that my brothers and I have established independent of my parents. We rent a ton of movies and watch them all day long while we work in the kitchen to put things together. It's always a good time, and there's rarely ever any stress, except for when Captain Mom (my sister-in-law) starts complaining that dinner is late (we don't care about getting it done by 5:00; she takes exception to having to eat at 7:00). I can't wait to do it all over again this year!

redras said...

Thanksgiving on a Monday? That is some crazy stuff. I prefer holidays that give you end of the week days rather than beginning of the week days off. If Sunday weren't Sunday, things would be different, but since Sunday is Sunday, Monday holidays mean you get a fun day followed by a "reverent" day and then another fun day. I prefer to have my fun days in succession. So if I ever get into politics, I'm going to raise teachers' salaries, get serious about the energy situation, and move all those pesky Monday holidays to Fridays. It will different America.

On an unrelated note, when you comment on your own blog, you a person who loves herself. I know that isn't actually funny, but it still makes me giggle.

Cicada said...

Redras, I'm totally with you on the whole Monday holiday thing. I'll vote for you for sure.

Also, every time I comment on my blog, I think that same thing: "So now it'll say that two people love me, but I'm one of the two people..." Or, in this case, "So now it'll say that four people love me, but I'm two of the four people."

daltongirl said...

I love you too. I am one of three. Or five.

But do you know how much MSG you guys ate with that one-hour meal? My stomach is in a knot just thinking about it.

Cicada said...

DG: MSG? Where? I can see it maybe being in the stovetop dressing and that's it. It's not like the rotisserie chickens were hosed down with MSG when they were turning on the spit. It's not like fresh potatoes have MSG in them. I don't think that the pumpkin I bought (ingredient: pumpkin) had MSG in it and I certainly didn't add any MSG to the pie unless MSG can be found in the following: cinamon, nutmeg, ginger, eggs, sugar, evaporated milk... Maybe I'm unclear on what MSG is. Please enlighten me.

AzĂșcar said...

The chickens will have been injected with flavoring agents, including but not limited to, possibly, MSG.

However, I think MSG fear is over rated (I am not allergic.)

I once asked a boy out because it was Canadian Thanksgiving. I thought he was so cute I took him to a diner for a turkey plate dinner. I don't think he cared :)

AzĂșcar said...

p.s. I eliminated the crucial point that he was Canadian. Also, that MSG stimulates the umami receptors on your tongue enhancing savory tastes. Some folks have a sensitivity towards it. I don't. It makes food taste good.

DP said...

Once, I had a feast at my house for Canadian Thanksgiving and someone brought a CD full of Canadian music. But I think one of my roommates stole it when we all moved away. It was a good thought, though. That person must have been cool. Even if she did refuse to come to my feast this year. I won't hold it against her.

Stupidramblings said...

MSG also makes you feel more full more quickly--which is why you see "No MSG" listed as a selling point for all-you-can-eat chinese buffets. I didn't know there were any people who had a sensitivity to it, but I guess "No MSG" could be a selling point for them too.

Melyngoch said...

Back in my wage-slave-at-the-MORC days, I used to go out of my way to observe Canada Day, partially because I worked with some completely deranged Canadians, and partially because it made the freshling patrons indignant. Apparently it was an affront to their fascist sense of nationalism.

So, just so you know, my fascist sense of nationalism is offended by your Canadian Thangsgiving nonsense.

Miss Hass said...

I'm impressed with your mad cooking skills!