Figured I'd better write something about Thanksgiving before Christmas goes speeding by. We had a real different holiday this year as it was the first time I didn't cook a big turkey dinner. Darling Daughter and family were heading to SIL's grandparents in Iowa and Fantastic Son and Serious Girlfriend were hanging in the cactus state and it was actually just Papa and I. I couldn't see cooking massive quantities of food for the two of us, especially since I'm trying to cut down on my food intake, so we went to Plan B.
After calling around in the city and country, I finally found a church close to the country house that was having a big turkey dinner. So Papa and I drove over there Thanksgiving afternoon and stood in line for quite some time to buy dinner "tickets". While standing in this line, we noticed the buffet line was not moving at all. So when it came our turn at the ticket table, we opted for carry-out dinners and trotted across the courtyard to the carry out building, stood in a line of 5 and took our large bags of food home with us to eat. Food was good....things tasted different from the way that I make it (stuffing & cranberries) but we had enough for leftovers the next day. All in all, I thought our turkey dinner was success but don't know if we'll repeat that, it just seemed somewhat unnatural.
We had a restful holiday weekend but it was also melancholy thinking about Thanksgivings past. Wednesday night as we were headed to the country house, I couldn't help but think about Thanksgivings at my grandparents house because we take the same highway, although we get off it after an hour versus the 9 more hours to the grandparents.
But it was restful. We were sleeping 12 hours every night which is unheard of but this caused me to miss the Macy's Parade. By the time I woke up it was already football time, so I was disappointed I didn't get to see the parade and new floats and, of course, Santa at the end. (What a big kid I am!)
A positive thought I keep for this time of year is that by the time Thanksgiving arrives, deer season is over. Papa hasn't hunted in years so deer season isn't a big thing in our house. However, we have the country house and lots of deer share our territory.
The first few years we were at the country house were pretty terrifying because the hunters seemed to be so close. I had to make sure FS (when he was still at home) wore orange outside so he wouldn't get shot roaming the woods. I had to keep Snoopy and another dog we had at the time, close to the house so they wouldn't get shot roaming the woods and if I could have, I would have outfitted my neighborhood deer with orange sock hats to protect them as well. As it was, we always rejoiced in the evening when we got home from work and would see our neighborhood deer in the corn field next door...still alive!
I don't know how they made it through some seasons (and I know that they can't possibly be the same deer all the time---the varying sizes give that away but we always have some neighborhood deer in the cornfield) but it's reassuring their being there and thinking they are the same deer. Another perk to our country home. (But wait until next summer when I start complaining about them eating all my houseplants on the front porch, I'm not so happy with them then.)
Back to subject....One Sunday, I remember the gunshots were so numerous and close that I was afraid to sit up in bed one morning. And yes I know bow season is also around this time and lasts into January and it far more dangerous because I can't hear arrows flinging through the air but for some reason I always focus on gun season more. Maybe it's because it's more popular and has more hunters out in the woods. Some of them aren't used to the woods or country and don't realize there are houses WITH PEOPLE and ANIMALS living in the woods also. That's what is more scary to me, I believe.
I also find it interesting that when it is deer season, it is also rutting (mating) season for the deer, so they are all crazed during this time. The does running from the bucks and bucks chasing the does. All this makes it that much more dangerous in the country especially when driving.
We have the elderly and teenage humans crashing into each other on a regular basis and now we have crazed deer running out on the roads more frequently---running from and chasing each other as well as running from the hunters and thus causing more accidents.
It's all pretty chaotic in the woods and neighboring roads in November. We try to avoid driving at dusk or after dark as it is and when we do get in the car, it seems like it takes two---one to do the driving and the other as a spotter to yell "DEER" when we see their eyes on the side of the road glinting from the headlights.
I know I'm bursting yet more of your bubbles for quiet, peaceful country living. Yet when Thanksgiving arrives, it always seems to calm down considerably. The gunshots cease, the hunters go home, the deer relax a little more, and the best thing is I can quit counting on seeing dead deer attached to cars or in truck beds wherever I go....the grocery store, McDonalds, the gas stations----it seems dead deer are everywhere I happen to go and it does get unnerving, looking at those blank dead deer eyes. Why don't the hunters close their eyes? Wouldn't it be hideous to go to a funeral home and see a deceased friend or relative with their eyes wide open? That's what I'm talking about. Come on hunters, give us a break and show the deer some compassion and close those eyes. (OK now I'm just writing bizarre so....)
Until next time....Grammy