This is the day most of us are busy with preparations for a traditional feast--turkey with stuffing, mashed potatoes with gravy, green beans in casseroles, sweet potatoes laced with maple syrup or topped with chopped nuts and marshmallows, and an assortment of pies. It's a holiday all about food, and traditional food at that. Everybody has a favorite memory of a food served on this day, and a lot of memories about the holiday itself, some, truth be told, not all that happy. But surely there is one theme to be cherished on this day every year: a mood of gratitude and family feelings as good as we can muster.
This year I'm in a transition on the holiday. I'm beginning to pack for a move to New Paltz in little more than a week. I've been invited to share the meal with one of the most special friends I've ever had, Cristina, whom I met here in Hoboken. Cristina is the kind of person who leaps to help anybody in her circle who needs her. In my case, she read a blog post I wrote on my other blog "Finding Myself in Hoboken" in which she could tell I was more than a bit lost and in need of somebody to help me find myself. Since that day four years ago, she has come to my rescue dozens of times, driving me to building supply stores, inviting me to a New Year's Eve with friends at her house, helping me shop, and always being there whenever I needed something. A couple of years ago she and her husband found an apartment for the winter in Miami and I knew there was one fewer reason to stay in Hoboken.
This Thanksgiving I want to tip my hat to Facebook. There are times when the system clogs up or the management of the site makes me want to choke somebody, but I keep coming back because of one thing: There is love there.
As for Cristina, I will try to convey to her, without making her uncomfortable, how much I've counted on her in my days in Hoboken, and how much I hope I'll find someone remotely like her in New Paltz. I'll do this cautiously, not to make her uncomfortable, while eating turkey at her get-together and savoring the meaning of the holiday.