Saturday, November 19, 2016

Happy Thanking Day - Bill Neville

Commentary by T.W. Bill Neville

Having within meaningful recollection, realized that I have always looked forward to the Thanksgiving day holiday, I trust that I may share my recollections with you. 

Back in my subteen years, say 1928 thru 1940, we were always treated to a Thanksgiving day with my Father's family, in as much as my Mother was an orphan and none of her family was in touch with each other. This was still the case until 1941, when, during WW two, none of my Father's family hosted, and we were on our own, which, somehow or other, Mom always set a table of family favorites. 

Of course, the Turkey was the star attraction, stuffed with sage dressing, accompanied by the mashed potatoes CANDIED YAMS, giblet gravy, creamed corn, cranberry sauce, a tossed salad, home baked dinner rolls, and home baked pumpkin, and pecan pie. Some years, we even had homemade vanilla ice cream, with homemade chocolate sauce. 

My brother and I always shared the "wishbone", the breast, and grasped an end, made a silent wish, pulled, and whoever got the "long" half won his wish, got to "lick" the paddle, and the "short" end, had to turn the crank on the hand-powered, ice cream churn.

After we were married in 1949, it became a ritual of a "feast" at one of the in-law's homes at noon, followed by another "feast" at the other's home later in the day. These "rituals" existed until we relocated from Indiana to Buffalo, N.Y. in 1958 where we celebrated with a neighbor. 

By June of 1959 we were transferred to Wheaton, Il, within 150 miles of my wife's family in Indiana, and it was then, off to Grandmother Klein's house for that and Christmas, until we moved to Florida in 1993 By then, both of our parents were deceased and we then, worked out a plan whereby we alternate a trip to our Illinois families one year and our South Carolina families the next year. 

This plan also applies to the Christmas and New Years holidays, resulting in the fact that we have never had a Thanksgiving or Christmas in Florida.

With the death of my wife, the "ritual" now falls "souly" on my shoulders, and GOD willing, I'll be chugging up interstate 95 on the 23rd, come HELL or HIGH WATER! WHY? you might be saying, but, I believe in "Family" traditions and, "Aspire to inspire before I Expire!!"

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