We celebrated our first Thanksgiving in Florida, just the four of us. My younger daughter and her boyfriend are visiting from Denver. Day 200 of walking fell on Turkey Day. So did my husband’s birthday. He was born on Thanksgiving, so the years when his birthday falls on the holiday are very special indeed. He celebrates all week.
We made our special Silver Palate stuffing, the one with the Grand Marnier. This year we substituted pecans for almonds, because my daughter arrived from her boyfriend’s family pecan farm in the southwest corner of Georgia with a fifty pound burlap bag full of pecans. We also mixed pecans with the green beans and made a pecan pie.
Everything was delicious. We have a new tradition-pecans.
And for now, and as long as we are in Florida, a walk to the beach after popping the turkey in the oven.
My husband loves to tell the story of the Thanksgiving Day he was born. He is the eighth of nine kids, seven boys, two girls. His mother had her hands full, to say the least. At five minutes to midnight, the doctor said, “If you can wait a few minutes Margaret, this one will be born on Thanksgiving.” At this point, she was an old pro at delivering babies, so she waited and he entered the world at 12:01 a.m., November 28, 1957. He is 56 this year. I am nine months older than him, already walking when he was born. And that’s kind of how things go most of the time, I’m always a few steps ahead of him, but we’re on the same journey.
My husband loves new things, adventure, and travel as much as I do. We have had our ups and downs over the past thirty-two years, twenty-one of them married to each other, but we never argue about vacation plans and adventures.
Last night the four of us went to downtown Delray for a walk along Atlantic Avenue. The beautiful people have arrived for the season. The people watching is entertaining. We saw a seventy something woman on the arm of her seventy something husband. She wore a sweater dress that was as short as a mini-skirt and wobbled along in knee high boots with three inch heels. Her makeup was heavy, her hair blond and perfectly coiffed. People dress to be noticed. Expensive jewelry. Designer bags, shoes, and purses. Nice watches, mink coats, expensive cars. We did a lot of car ogling. Mazarattis, Bentleys, Jags. The valets are busy again.
We wandered our way down to the park where the holiday carousel has been set up.
A Tom Petty cover band was playing. “Tom” was wearing a blond wig and a black top hat. He sounded okay but he wasn’t the real Tom. We watched a woman in front of us dance soulfully. Her style was a cross between ballet and cheerleading, with a lot of hand waving. Couples danced near the stage, some of them seriously good.
We are all Tom Petty fans and were impressed with ourselves. We knew the lyrics to all the songs. We didn’t dance, but we did sing along.
After the first set, we wandered into Pineapple Grove. We knew “the kids” would like our favorite coffee bar by day, amazing beer joint by night spot that we discovered in this artsy neighborhood off the Avenue.
The Coffee District has over one hundred craft beers to choose from, I settled on a maple syrup brew. I know, sounds weird, but it was delicious. Just a hint of maple syrup. Karaoke was happening. The talent in the house last night was amazing and all over the place. The average age thirty-five. We heard some Pearl Jam, a couple of country tunes, some heavy metal, and Enya.
My favorite song of the evening was a perfect tune for Rich and me, the guy who sang it sounded just like Zac Brown. My husband is here with me in Florida, giving me the opportunity to write and make this dream happen. I have finished my second novel. We lived in our old house our entire marriage. It was the source of many financial hardships which led to lots of arguments, but we weathered the storm. And here we are, starting a new chapter in the story of our life. We don’t have a lot of money, but we’ve traveled many a mile together, hand in hand. We raised two lovely daughters who are off on their own adventures. We are free as we will ever be.