My First American Thanksgiving

My First American Thanksgiving

It's that time of the year already. The holiday season just kicked off with Thanksgiving Day. Everywhere you go there are holiday decorations, and it all just makes Washington D.C. look prettier (increasing my dread of leaving it).

While all my roommates who originally lived in the United States were arranging their transportation back home, and my Korean friends planning their last weekend getaways before the program ends, I wasn't doing anything. My internship had me wondering, practically until the last minute, if I really was going to have to go to work on the day after Thanksgiving. In the end, I got the day off, but it was too late to make any traveling plans. Not that I'm complaining. I had a fabulous Thanksgiving Day and a very relaxing weekend.

With all the signs pointing at my staying in D.C. for the Thanksgiving holidays, I began working out a plan for a truly American Thanksgiving dinner. I mean, TWC was having a Thanksgiving dinner at the RAF for all those who were left here. I'm sure it was great. But I wanted the satisfaction of cooking up a whole dinner on my own. I started stalking my roommate Hilary weeks before, asking about what the traditional American Thanksgiving menu was. The Food Network was on our TV every single day for the last two weeks. I bookmarked a million recipies online...but in the end, chose as I was cooking. My menu for Thanksgiving dinner was: turkey, corn bread, banana bread, mashed potatoes with gravy, cranberry sauce, mini-apple pies, and thanks to my friend Arion, some veggies, chicken, and drinks.

The food turned out better than I thought it would, especially the turkey (although it's not in the picture), but the problem was...that there was no one really left at the RAF to come and eat it. In the end, I only had 2 friends over for a dinner meant for 5 or more. The big surprise here was that we managed to eat almost everything.

Then came Black Friday. Being a foreigner, this was a whole new concept to me. Although I was too tired and maybe a little frightened to go out at dawn for the 'doorbuster' sales, I managed to venture out in the afternoon. It was amusing, really, to see men walking out of the shopping center with huge flat-screen televisions hoisted on their shoulders and satisfied smiles on their faces. And women going through the aisles of clothing and whatnot. This kind of sale is something you just do not have a chance to see in my country, so I caught onto the excitement in the air pretty easily by just being out there.

All in all, too many helpings of what you might call "American culture" in one week. But I enjoyed every moment of it. Note to future TWC interns coming in from a different country: traveling around the U.S. in the Thanksgiving holidays is great, but make sure you experience the cultural part of it, too. I can give you my word - it's wonderful :)


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