For some, Thanksgiving is a time of reflection, a time to count blessings, a time to eat a lot and watch football and nap. All of which I endorse.
For my family of five, though, for the last decade or so, Thanksgiving has been about travel. Cross-state travel. From Homerville to Moultrie to Albany, back east toward Waycross, then back to Homerville. Sometimes we went to Waycross first. Sometimes, we started in Albany. Sometimes, we extended it for two or three days. Four family Thanksgiving dinners packed into one holiday weekend, one mini-van, multiple moods.
This Thanksgiving, we had one holiday meal – in Valdosta. That was it. Which meant most of my four-day holiday weekend was spent at home with the immediate family.
This unexpected Thanksgiving miracle allowed me to focus on things I always wanted to do over such a holiday, but never had time before – things like clean the carport, find socks that match, get the Christmas decorations out of the attic, spend quality time with my children, read a book, and nothing. Which I spent a lot of time on.
When I wasn’t doing nothing, I was:
• Teaching my nine-year-old son a geography/Social Studies lesson.
We were watching the NFL’s New York Giants and Washington Redskins play Sunday night when he asked “Why do they (the announcers) keep saying D.C.?”
“The Redskins are from Washington, D.C.,” I replied.
He looked puzzled. I spotted a teaching moment.
“Do you know what D.C. stands for?”
He hesitated a bit, then answered, “De Capital?”
I replied with a chuckle, “no, District of Columbia.”
“Why do they call it District of Columbia?”
This time, I looked puzzled.
“Because,” I answered.
• Watching TV.
Which is technically doing something.
The TV folks really need to step up their game in terms of Thanksgiving holiday programming. Other than football and the “Modern Family” marathon on USA network, I found nothing worth viewing hour after hour. And I’m not one to watch one of those ridiculous reality shows, like “Bill Moyers Journal.”
Actually, I was watching others cook, which is very close to doing nothing, except that I opened my mouth every so often to stuff something in it my wife or daughter were cooking. I did spend my entire Saturday morning cooking a buffalo chicken dip for that afternoon’s college football games. In non-holiday time, that usually takes about 20 minutes.
• Played basketball.
For my boys, football season is over, so I swept off the driveway court to move on to the next sport. I even tried to dunk once on the nine-foot goal.
• Applied a heating pad to my back while I sat motionless on the couch (see above).
That took up most of Friday. The good news is that I finally figured out the ending to “Inception” – the names that scroll at the end are people who worked on the movie.
So, now, my Thanksgiving holidays are like everyone else’s – a time of reflection, a time to count blessings, eat a lot, watch football, and nap. All of which I endorse, and not just for a holiday weekend.
© Len Robbins 2013