Written by Nashua Springberry, Foster Undergraduate
Believe it or not almost no other country on the planet celebrates thanksgiving with the sole exception being Canada (but let’s be honest they celebrate it on the wrong day anyway). A great part of studying abroad is sharing your cultural rituals and traditions with other people. In my program there was only four other Americans besides me and one of these four Americans, my good friend Kelsey, was determined to share the great holiday of Thanksgiving with all of our new internationals friends – all of whom (besides those Canadians) had never had a Thanksgiving dinner before in their lives! So Kelsey made a casual post on our communal facebook group page inviting anyone and everyone to join her for Thanksgiving dinner – she would just need some volunteers to help cook and everyone to chip in ten dollars so she can go grocery shopping and buy all the necessary goodies.
Well turns out our international friends were dying to experience a Thanksgiving dinner and the amount of interest was overwhelming. All told Kelsey had 48 people sign up for Thanksgiving dinner. She then frantically went up trying to deliver on the promised dinner. Let me tell you, you would think cooking dinner for 48 people would be impossible – try buying 48 peoples worth of thanksgiving food at a French grocery store – the same grocery stores that didn’t sell full turkeys. In the end we settled on 13 chickens, vast quantities of potatoes, enough homemade stuffing material for a small town (I’m still sure there are leftovers), multiple jugs of wine, and an immense amount of ice cream. Getting all of that home using one shopping cart and three people was almost has hard as making the dinner itself. After much labor and volunteer work we completed the American feast. Before digging in on that joyus Thursday everyone went around the room saying what they were thankful for – in true American style – with a French twist.