Happy Expat Thanksgiving

There are no Thanksgiving feasts in Amsterdam. Just remember, Columbus did not settle Europe and the Indians did not bring maize to the Dutch tables. Thus no Thanksgiving. Sure, everyone could dress up a turkey, gather with friends, and give thanks but it’s not catching on in other parts of the world. So American expats across the globe attempt to recreate Thanksgiving with a bunch of other Americans (or in my case) a bunch of South Africans, Dutchie, English, and my Zimbabwe slash American husband. This year I ordered a free range turkey (there are no frozen butterballs and this turkey tasted amazing) from a local butcher. I went ahead and ordered a 12 pound bird. My butcher passed some slight judgement over my desire for such a large turkey. My assurances that Africans eat as much as Americans fell on deaf ears. The day before our Thanksgiving I went to pick up my turkey. I’m fairly confident that I have never carried a 12 pound turkey before. My grandpas were always in charge of acquiring said 12-20 pound bird. And they had a big suburban to haul back their bounty. Have you ever manhandled 12 pounds of cold dead meat? Or gotten on a tram full of morning commuters hoping that said cold dead meat won’t accidentally slip out of your hands and bounce down the aisle? And then walked 400 meters back to your house where you breathe a sigh of relief that your oven is indeed big enough for the main course? Thanksgiving just looks different outside of America. But there is something about the smell of turkey, stuffing, pumpkin pie, and friends gathering around your table that ultimately captures the spirit of Thanksgiving.









2 thoughts on “Happy Expat Thanksgiving

  1. I’m slightly disappointed that I didn’t spot any paper pilgrim hats 😉 ha The table looked beautiful – you are such a good Thanksgiving hostess!

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