As I was driving into the big city on my way to my mother’s house for Thanksgiving, many thoughts filled my reservoir of memories. It only seemed like yesterday when the boys were sitting in their car seats and my dad could not wait to see his grandsons. Mom was busy cooking in the kitchen and kicked everyone out until it was time to serve the homemade soup. When we arrived at last, my mom was excited to see everyone. The house looked the same as it did for the past fifty years including mom’s Mah Jong box awaiting for some family fun after dinner.
The family landscape had changed throughout the years but one thing was constant – mom’s sticky fried rice which we all love to consume no matter how full we were. It was not the turkey (though I had to have my quota of turkey legs each year) or the stuffing. No, it was all about the sticky fried rice!
The street was full of parked cars (many were residents so that their guests could park in the small driveways). The fond memories gave way to new ones as the older son is now married and his wife, our new daughter-in-law, was able to enjoy a few family traditions including learning how to play MJ while winning a few hands at the same time.
The boys, though much older now, joked around with their uncle as they had always done for years. The former high-pitched laughter had changed to low grunts and giggling now. Too bad my dad was not here to enjoy the new family but I’m sure he would have loved it all. He had passed away ten years ago.
While I drove home through the Golden Gate Bridge at night, the car was quiet (probably because of the turkey and family fun).
It was a good night when suddenly, my mind turned to what people were probably doing at this early time of night – Black Friday shopping!
My heart was sad as people seemed to care more about finishing their dinner early so that they could stand in line at the various malls just to get their hands on deals (some of which I’m sure they will resell to make some money).
Thanksgiving happens in only one day and then it’s off to the malls! What has society become? People lose sight of this holiday and forget about what they really should be thankful for – family and friends who have taken their time to come together and enjoy a meal, laughter, and making new memories.
I hope your Thanksgiving was filled with the true meaning of the holiday – giving thanks. I do not mean to judge anyone – simply sharing how I have seen Thanksgiving Day change over the past half a century. So happy we chose to participate in the traditions of this great day and leave a legacy that will hopefully be passed onto our next generation.
Next holiday – Christmas!!!