On the first day of December, we celebrated Thanksgiving here in New Zealand. It was the first day of summer and about a week late by the calendar year. It’s not a national holiday here, plus it’s not even harvest time, but we wanted to celebrate anyway. Peter went hunting twice for a peacock, but the crafty birds outsmarted him and all he was able to catch was a hare. So we settled on having rabbit and chicken for our big dinner. To go along with the meat, we cooked mashed potatoes, stuffing, kumara (sweet potatoes) and corn bake. We had about 20 guests attending, all brought a variety of dishes. One friend had to look up Thanksgiving and what Americans normally eat for the occasion, and found something about lasagna on the internet. So she brought lasagna… I’ve never heard of this myself, anyone?? Other items included a jar of cranberries, salads, desserts, homebrew, bottles of wine and whitebait fritters. Whitebait, a delicacy here, is tiny little fish caught in large quantities cooked whole into fritters made out of a handful of whitebait and eggs, kind of like an omelette. Our shared meal, with friends on this beautiful evening on the first day of summer was quite the feast and we dubbed it “Summersgiving”. Of course no Thanksgiving or Summersgiving is complete without good old American pie, and Peter and I prepared two pumpkin pies and one apple pie, with cream whipped by hand to top it off. It was a successful event and we enjoyed sharing the tradition with our new group of friends, thankful that we have found a community of kind people.
This song has been shuffling around our summer playlist for awhile. And since we sometimes feel like we are “upside down” down here, down under, having Thanksgiving in summer, it seems appropriate.