As the holiday season kicks off tomorrow, take a moment and step back from the sales, hoopla, family dinners/arguments/loony Uncles etc. and think about how lucky we are to live where we do…
And have the freedoms that we have, both due to our country and our ability to EARN a good enough living to be able to feed the crowd, travel to family, and the other things that we take for granted…
Having spent a number of Thanksgivings and Christmases out of the country over the years, I truly count myself lucky to be able to enjoy these holidays with family and friends. I know many scoff at the food in the military, but I will tell you that Thanksgiving and Christmas the mess halls/chow halls, the field kitchens, the mess decks on the ships and subs ALL go out of their way to fix a traditional meal, literally soup to nuts (and everything in between) for those servicemen and women (and on shore bases the families) of our military.
This is from the 646th ADC in New Jersey (in 1956).
This is from the 71st Transportation Battalion in Vietnam in 1967, sorry for the lousy copy…
A bit of history… From Plimoth Plantation living history museum
What Was on the First Thanksgiving Menu?
Little is known about the first Thanksgiving dinner in the Plimoth Colony in October 1621, attended by some 50 English colonists and about 90 Wampanoag American Indian men in what is now Massachusetts.
We do know that the Wampanoag killed five deer for the feast, and that the colonists shot wild fowl—which may have been geese, ducks, or turkey. Some form, or forms, of Indian corn were also served.
But Jennifer Monac, spokesperson for the living-history museum Plimoth Plantation, said the feasters likely supplemented their venison and birds with fish, lobster, clams, nuts, and wheat flour, as well as vegetables such as pumpkin, squash, carrots, and peas.
“They ate seasonally,” Monac said in 2009, “and this was the time of the year when they were really feasting. There were lots of vegetables around, because the harvest had been brought in.”
Much of what we consider traditional Thanksgiving fare was unknown at the first Thanksgiving. Potatoes and sweet potatoes hadn’t yet become staples of the English diet, for example. And cranberry sauce requires sugar—an expensive delicacy in the 1600s. Likewise, pumpkin pie went missing due to a lack of crust ingredients.
And the whole food coma thing? Well, that’s yet another myth…
It’s not the tryptophan in the turkey, it’s the booze, the amount of food (those second and third helpings of Granny’s sweet potato casserole and the pumpkin pie), and the sheer relaxation (other than the family fights/looney Uncle) and not having to work the next day…
And please, when you do sit down for your Thanksgiving, say a prayer for all our men and women serving in the military wherever they may be, and remember too our LEOs, Fire and EMS folks that are on the front lines here at home every day.
Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours…
I spent two years of my active duty time, as a crew member on a can stationed at Fort Schuyler, NY.
One of those years I had the duty on Thanksgiving and the meal was wonderful
You would have needed two trays to sample everything and as they were preparing a meal for maybe only 30-40 people, they went all out.
It was very memorable in the good way.
And as we were inport, you didn’t have to glue your mess tray to chow table with a piece of milk soaked bread.
Happy Thanksgiving to all!
And especially to those who are far from home and family.
My Dad was Navy during the Korea aboard the Wisconsin. Many holidays he’d talk about the great meals the cooks fixed for the crew on the holidays. He was 6’3″ and weighed 135 when he entered basic at Great Lakes. He weighed 185 when he got out 4 years later.
Happy Thanksgiving to you all!
As an Ol Cow Killer from the Suck we fixed everything from scratch at K-Bay. And we were feeding 8,000 Marines a meal. Enlisted and Officers came through our lines. That was at the end of the ’70’s.
That for me is what makes this a favorite holiday. A day to reflect on what we have to be thankful for. I think Black Friday shopping spoils this – go out and buy more stuff !
Happy Thanksgiving to you, your family, and your readers. Grateful for all of you.
I thank the Lord for all those who serve and those who need their service. I pray peace, comfort, health and healing to all. Grant that my criticism never stray into envy and hatred. Amen
All- Thank you and blessings on your houses!!!
I’m thankful I’m able to work every Thanksgiving and the day after and (usually) the weekend. Some folks aren’t able to work at all.
Happy Thanksgiving. It’s good when you don’t have to open a spam can and call it turkey.
“Not having to work the next day…”
Guess what I’m doing right now? And tomorrow, and tomorrow, and…
Happy Thanksgiving! And what great menus.
Robert- Great point!
Drang- Thanks for doing what you do.
LSP- And the same to you and yours, my friend!