Thanksgiving burp 2019

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Sad are the stories about soldiers posted to far corners of the earth having to eat their turkey out of ration cans. Other people away from the U.S. on Thanksgiving face challenges, too.

An organization I belong to, Paris Alumni Network, joined American University Clubs for a Thanksgiving dinner, making for an intimate setting of 200.

The pumpkin soup was delicious. It was downhill all the way from there. The slice of turkey was dry as usual. The dressing had never seen the inside of a turkey. Grey and stiff, it resembled congealed mush. The corn and green beans were canned. Baked, carmelized sweet potato slices were barely passable. The cranberry sauce (lower right) was the real mystery – a meat-based gravy combined with some sort of rose-tinted berry about the size of tapioca, nothing faintly like any cranberry I’ve ever seen (most likely pomegranate seeds).

All this for only 69 euros/$76. I skipped out before dessert. Even curiosity as uncontrollable as mine couldn’t convince me to stay for what their version of pecan pie would be like.

Part of the lure was that it gave a chance to see inside Ecole Miitaire, an impressive piece of French patrimony. In this case it meant a crowded reception room and the adjacent nondescript dining hall.

I’m thankful that I can revert to my usual practice of downplaying this holiday dinner in favor of reflecting on what I really can be thankful for.


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