My Strangest Thanksgiving, EVER
It was in the late '90's I was backpacking around the world, and for the first time in all of my travels had never been away from the United States on a uniquely American holiday.
That all changed when I found myself, on Thanksgiving day, in Hokitika, New Zealand. The photo below can't due the environment I was surrounded in justice - an entire mountain side covered in wildflowers, with a fog sitting on the ridge line, just after daybreak.
It's Thanksgiving day. What would any American abroad do? I scuttled back to town to find me a TURKEY! I spoke with the grocer, butcher and any other shop with foodstuffs for sale in search of the essence of the meal I was hoping for. Only to learn from the tavern owner, THERE ARE NO TURKEYS in New Zealand. None, nada, nothing - Kiwi's know not the taste of turkey.
A meal of spiced lamb had to do, prepared and shared with all at my campsite. If I have to say, it was an unforgettable experience. I still remember it like yesterday almost 20 years on. I think once you explain a holiday that is woven so deeply into your psyche as Thanksgiving to people who have only tangentially heard of it, it leaves an impression on you, the teller.
I made a number of great friends that Thanksgiving day, a few I'm still in touch with. And always serve lamb at Thanksgiving.