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All about gratitude and giving!

Tini Sara Anien, Nov 22, 2012, DHNS :

Thanksgiving Day

family time (Top) Cynthia Fernando, A L Calistus Jude and Philomena Alphonse. (Bottom) Jonathan and Lenuel.

Thank You’, two words that are so often used, amount to a lot when meant sincerely. A day to celebrate the same, is a tradition for some and a celebration for others.

‘Thanksgiving Day’, which is being celebrated by many in the City today, is an occasion to gorge on food and desserts, of togetherness, fun, nostalgia and family time. Metrolife talks to people in the City to find out how important the occasion is for them.

For Indira Catherine Mahadevan, a music teacher, thanksgiving is not as traditional as it is universally. “For us, thanksgiving is the church harvest festival. The church is decorated with sugarcane, corn, and people bring things from their gardens, some others make goodies, and these things are auctioned off,” she says.

She adds, “The festivity continues at home with family and friends. The special menu for the day consists of dishes made of different meats, lots of salads, and a good dessert. Thanksgiving for us is about having fun and pulling each other’s legs.”

Beth Chapman, an expat and president of the Overseas Womens Club, is celebrating thanksgiving in all its  grandeur. “I’m doing what I do every year and that is to invite family and friends over, including my Indian friends.

I’ve grown up seeing an open-door policy at home and no one is turned away at our table. Back home in the US, we knew a lot of people who didn’t have families and we would be their families. Here too, we invite everyone over and ask them to bring something to the table, which often varies from Korean bulgogi to Swedish meatballs,” says Beth.

She adds with a laugh, “Last year, we had so many people over that we had to make a long table of many different tables. Thanks to the many friends we have, we are able to arrange for everything traditional that is thanksgiving, from frozen cranberry to turkey. It will be a great feast with friends, despite the many disasters that the big gathering will see.”

Elizabeth Bowden-David’s family always has both turkey and ham on the day.

“Thanksgiving food emphasises the flavours of the traditional American autumn, and so our table will have a spread of pumpkin, apple, corn, green beans and pecans.”

Elizabeth, a restaurant owner, who’s celebrating her seventh thanksgiving in the City adds, “The day after thanksgiving marks the beginning of the Christmas season, and so we will probably put up the tree, the next day.”

Annabelle Heiden, a fashion designer, feels that one doesn’t need an exclusive day to celebrate thanksgiving. For her, everyday is a day to be thankful.

   “I’m thankful that we wake up every morning and are able to see the light of day. I’m thankful for family and friends, without whom we would not be happy, and most importantly I’m thankful for the peace in our lives,” says Annabelle.

“Even though we do not celebrate thanksgiving as a tradition, for us, our church’s ‘mission day’ is very important. We donate to different causes run by the church, and do our share for the society,” says A L Calistus Jude, an assistant professor with Kristu Jayanti College. “Contributing back to the society is thanksgiving for us,” he adds.


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