Thanks to the Freudenbergers, Mark, Karen, Maia and Anika, who opened their house, their oven, their refrigerator, their stovetop, their wine bottles, and their hearts to 14 PCVs, 3 other American ex-pats and one lonely Japanese for a Thanksgiving feast to remember. They also provided all of the essentials of the holiday celebration – the turkeys, cranberry sauce, real wine glasses, cloth napkins and real silverware.
Thanks to the PCVs who got supplies from home, who researched modified recipes, and mostly just cooked, until we had enough food to feed a starving African nation. And rest assured - there were leftovers, most of which are going to feed members of an African nation.
Especially thanks to Sharlot and Bridget – Sharlot for her unbelievable brown sugar pecan pie and Bridget for the only apple dish available to us – canned apple cobbler from the States (thanks also Betty Crocker for inventing such a thing so we could have apple cobbler out of season).
Thanks also to Bridget and Sheena, the two PCV vegetarians who still whole-heartedly attacked the job of de-stuffing the turkey…
Thanks to the American ex-pats who brought broccoli and fancy salad dressing and real pecan pie and proved to us that just because you’re living in a 3rd world country, you needn’t eat like you’re living in a 3rd world country. And who insisted on no rice. Thanks also because they opened their homes to ensure that each of the out-of-towners would have a safe place to rest their overly bloated stomachs after the exertion.
Thanks to the humble housekeepers who gave up time on a Saturday afternoon to help with between-course washing of dishes and generally keeping a lid on things when they were most likely to explode (don’t worry, they were well-rewarded with turkey).
Thanks to the landlord of the Freudenbergers’ apartment complex who finally managed to put up the basketball hoop and plant grass so we could work off some of the stuffing with basketball and croquet in order to make room for dessert.
And finally, thanks to both Peace Corps and SantéNet for providing me with this extraordinary 3rd year opportunity – I am truly grateful for a lot of reasons, but on this day because without it I would have never had the chance to share a holiday with this home-away-from-home family.