Mmmm . . . Turkey Day. I have a relationship with food. I consider Thanksgiving our anniversary.
Every year, I celebrate our love with an enormous amount of turkey, gravy, stuffing, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes—I’m drooling—sweet potatoes with melted marshmallows, limas and carrots, and my favorite: corn pudding. My pie plate is a combo of pumpkin and pecan.
I’m in agony after writing that. Give me a moment. OK.
When I realized that I was actually in Cambodia and therefore would not be consuming this glorious meal, I had my first real longing for my life back home. I missed something else, too, that I hadn’t really thought about before: tradition.
I wouldn’t wake up to my mom and grandma prepping the turkey and stuffing. There wouldn’t be the sound of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in the background. I wouldn’t be fighting over how much corn pudding I was going to share with my uncle if one of the two casserole dishes broke.
I won’t bore you with more examples, but having those traditions with my family seemed as enjoyable as the food itself.
Traveling is especially hard during the holidays and it forces you to think about what’s important on those days and how to find those things wherever you may be.
So when I heard from a little birdie that a restaurant near my apartment served a delicious turkey dinner with mashed potatoes and gravy, I decided to celebrate Thanksgiving in Cambodia.
In my enthusiasm about the turkey dinner I inhaled hastily ate mine when I got it, so this is a picture from a friend. *Thanks Maggie*
The potatoes were real mashed potatoes and the gravy was sent from heaven, I swear. The turkey was stuffed with onions, chicken, ham, parsley, and some other seasonings, and was moist and delicious. The vegetables were vegetables, but I ate every bite.
It reignited the flame of love for me and I’m pretty sure I caught some other people having an affair with their dinners, too.
We all still talked about the dishes we missed and how we wished there were pie, but overall it was a night to be thankful for. New friends, good food, and cheap beer. Oh yeah, and we were in freakin’ Cambodia.