A View From Middle England - Conservative with a slight libertarian touch - For Christian charity and traditional belief - Free Enterprise NOT Covert Corporatism

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving Day!

Thanksgiving Day
Today is Thanksgiving Day in the United States. This is probably the only day of the year when Americans can feel like real Americans. It is uniquely American in it's understanding of fusing the soil with the soul. Not even the Harvest Festivals of English parishes quite measure up to the senses of family gathering and public celebration that Thanksgiving Day provides. Oddly enough, although the day has religious overtones, it is not an overtly religious day. Yes, it was the puritans who gave thanks for those crops in their first years of toil and tribulation as they battled the elements to secure a foothold on the new continent. But they never seemed to take ownership of the festival. So Americans of all types and classes, religious or secular, rich or poor, can enjoy the day for what it is.

Conversely, the English Harvest Festival is far more religiously overt. "We plough the fields and scatter...." and the parish thanks God for the bounty. Good as it is, it is only that. In urban parishes we are reduced to supplying cans of food. This year we were advised to provide only cans with ring pull tops. Why? Because the needy don't carry can openers around with them. Seemples!

Whilst our harvest festivals praise the Lord for His generosity and remind us of our good fortune, we appear less keen on having a good family get together. I've never heard anyone in Britain say, "Oh, I must get home for Harvest Festival". Whereas, such a sentiment regarding Thanksgiving Day is commonplace. In fact, large swathes of the TV movie business are given over to celebrating it. I've had several Thanksgiving Days in America. Not all the same, I do remember. One was a large gathering with real roast turkey and all the "fixings". The other was with turkey roll and a can of cranberry sauce. Well, it was a solid piece alright. The rings from the can remained around it as if the can had be a modelling mould. One sliced this congealed concoction to add with the roll. Still, it was Thanksgiving Day and we enjoyed it! Friends and family, family and friends.

Something that is unique can't really be copied. But it would be nice if Britain could have a similar sort of day so people could say, "Yes, I must get home that day!".


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