In the past years Thanksgiving was at Meme's house, that is me.
In the past my dining room table was filled we were always 12 and sometimes 13.
I brought out the Limoges with the gold and cobalt blue borders , the gold rimmed glasses and polished the Lilly of the Valley Sterling flat ware, in the mniddle of
the table the 8 arm sterling candelabras. Was I wealthy?? Heavens , NO!
I was and still am an ANTIQUE DEALER.
Did I grow up with such niceties? We were lucky to have a few pieces of 18/8 solid stainless steel forks and knives. The working knives for cutting the preparations of meals were getting smaller and smaller, they were ancient and the Gypsies came along once a year to sharpen them.
Never heard of eating a turkey and a chicken was for Sundays or when we had enough money.
The contrast of the way I lived and the gorgeous table was just more a passing fancy it was all about the FOOD. I love food , I DID love to cook.
I started 3 days before Thanksgiving, Sabrina was in charge of the store and I was in the kitchen just glowing with every spoon of butter which entered into the pan.
Thanksgiving day I had the TV blasting with the Parade in New York and the Giant balloons and pretty girls dancing and freezing their nipples off while they were in hardly covered up attire.
I glanced now and then onto the screen while I continues to cook for an army.
I always had way too much but my mother always said if you do not have left overs it means someone left the table hungry. Should not be happening.
My husband would fuss with decorations and surveying the pots and pans while coming to "sample" a bit. It was heavenly.
Bob became ill and in the last years the task was getting heavy, the kids brought dishes of food and we ate from Melmac plates while Bob wondered who were all these people....The fall of my kitchen duties was hard but I was too tired to care.
Everyone showed up and we wondered each time if that would be the last one with Papa. His last one was indeed in this house. He passed in September 2010 and our first Thanksgiving without him was weak at best.
I had put out my lovely table on the side of the road with a sign "FREE", it was gone within minutes. A very well stacked lady was delighted and I figured she was going to feed a lot of people at that table, there would be laughter and singing and lots of food. I let it go to a fun place, I just knew it and delighted in it.
Kids brought food and we managed to eat on trays on the carpet and wherever.
We all missed the person who would sit in the bergere and laugh with us.
It ended with arguments over politics and the room became quiet or heated and very uncomfortable. I decided NO MORE!.
So this year Sabrina and her family plus another teener and I went to the beach.
I packed sweaters upon sweater after all it is end of November.
Turned out to be 70 during the day and I was stuck with my white T shirt for days , the one with short sleeves. I did stay in the room or balcony for most of the time. I was playing word games on my Kindle and loving it while the sun shone on my
wrinkled face and I did not give a damn if 100 more wrinkles would appear. It was heavenly to watch the Atlantic which looked like a lake.
Kids went deap sea fishing, I was not thrilled on the catch (baby shark) but ..hey..chacun a son gout. The fish were frozen to go to Brevard anyway.
Thanksgiving day we were on the road so we stopped at a Shoneys and had their buffet, no one seemed to care about the date, we were "en route" to crab legs fresh from the ocean.
Football was on and 3 guys jumping up and down or booing, take your pick.
"That's how you play as a receiver!!!" , " What you do not know how to catch a ball?"
"Idiot call on that one!!!" Testeterone in full action.
I did not care I just kept playing my own game.
I missed Bob, we loved traveling together. Most of all I also missed the fun they were having around me. Not hearing the conversations , the jokes, the answers...it is not fun. One can't keep asking :"What did he say?"
Hearing aids suck in plain English. That is my 4th set!!!!
So I was lonely in the crowd but I would be that at home too and when I looked outside and saw the sand, the kids making sandcastles and the Atlantic Ocean ...then..I was glad to be there....I was glad I was not home cooking.
PS I gave my Limoges dishes to Rhonda, sold my gold rimmed glasses, still have my silver ware and candelabra but packed away.
Life at 79 without my partner is different.
Should I be thankful that I am still here? Some days I am and some days I am not but I am thankful that I had the 4 days at the beach.