Thankful for Friends, Family & ... Readers
I never know what to post on Thanksgiving because 1) the holiday has lots of detractors and 2) i did not grow up celebrating it inmy native Haiti. One caveat though is that in my near 15 years of living in the US, I have never met a person, however critical of the holiday, who did not actually spend valued time with friends and/or family during it.
Today I received a text message from my friend Sarah, a neighbor I turn too when I miss speaking and laughing in our native Creole, that summarizes my sentiments perfectly. From a train station in Pennsylvania where she was waiting to be picked up by her brother, she managed to tap onto her mobile the following words:
"I know this holiday is extremely problematic...even so, i want y'all to know how special you are to me & how thankful i am to have you in my life."
I say the same to you my readers from the bottom of my heart.
I will also share the musings of my other friend Jennifer on this day. Jennifer, who is of irish/african/native american descent via Virginia and the Bahamas, blogged for the first time in a while today, reminiscing on her late mother, love and the importance of genealogy in understanding family. Specifically, she advances a theory that her beau, a New Orleans Creole, may have an usually cohesive family precisely because of that French connection. Very interesting.
I am about to go spend time with her and my own family. In the Haitian meaning of the word, that means I am about to see not just siblings and parents but really, cousins, nephews and most importantly friends who have become family. I don't know if French ancestry or a French colonial past have anything to do with it but somehow indeed "lafanmi" as I define it rather broadly is very important -- and when you think of the money transfers that take place every day from the US to Haiti between family members, you can even say vital -- to most Haitians. In that sense, I can only imagine that Thanksgiving is as important as any holiday to most Haitian-Americans.
As I eat turkey and yummy cranberry sauce alongside pommes de terre au gratin, tarte a l'oignon, souffle de mais and griot and bannan peze later on, you'll be in my thoughts.
If you are in the US, have a great Thanksgiving. If you are elsewhere, please receive my sincere thank you for reading me.
Technorati: thanksgiving - haiti - haitian-american - new orleans - creole - caribbean-american
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