Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thoughts on Thanksgiving

Long-time blog readers will know that I'm not much on Thanksgiving.

That's not to say that I don't appreciate the holiday, or that I don't enjoy a turkey-stuffing-mashed potato-cranberry sauce sandwich from time to time.

But I've never really celebrated it on my own.

For years I did the "are we celebrating Thanksgiving or Christmas this year?" dance with my family. Since I was single, and living in New York, I had to travel to them--no one was going to visit me and sleep on the floor of my studio. (Not that I blamed them.) But that meant all the travel expenses were on my end.

Finally I got tired of it, and started my own tradition: traveling elsewhere for Thanksgiving. And by "elsewhere," I mean "internationally."

As I'm sure you know, domestic airfares around Thanksgiving are atrocious--easily three or four times what they would be normally, and the airports are packed. But international airfares--from America to anywhere else in the world--are super-cheap.

Why? Because no one travels outside America for Thanksgiving, it being a purely American holiday.

So, 1. Incredibly cheap airfares, 2. Deserted international terminals at the airport, 3. Still good weather in Europe, 4. Fewer tourists than usual (because all the Americans are at home), means A Great Time to Travel Internationally.

And I'll see everyone at Christmas anyway.

What am I missing by fleeing the country for four days? I can eat turkey at Christmas, see my family then, and I wouldn't dare set foot out of the house on Black Friday anyway. (I do all my Christmas shopping online.)

The last couple of years, due to moves (first to California, then to Massachusetts), I wasn't able to take advantage of this lovely tradition. But this year, I'm reviving it.

So while you're listening to your in-laws griping, trying to defrost the turkey in time, and fighting stampeding crowds at Wal-Mart on Black Friday, I will be soaking up the rays in Costa Rica, drinking things out of pineapples.

Lots and lots of drinks out of pineapples.

See you all in December.

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