... was to go see Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire at the IMAX Theatre on Thanksgiving Day -- we've been doing one or two movies on Thanksgiving and sometimes a touring Broadway show in the evening for the last several years -- but the weather had other ideas. Though we didn't get as heavy a snow as predicted, during the past 30 hours we've had high winds and horizontally traveling snow. Never a good sign for driving.
So I only went out to walk down the driveway to get the newspaper on Thursday and we stayed home while my wife did her turkey cooking pre-labs and we had the "traditional" Polish perogis and Scottish haggis Thanksgiving dinner. With green peas. And still warm pumpkin pie for dessert. No, really, honest!
We are such recluses that it seems we hardly know anyone. So it was a shock Thanksgiving night to see a familiar face. Dr. Janet Anderson, former chair of the Math Department at Hope College, was killed in a car crash in Allegan County. But I know her -- or did. In 1996-97 I taught Physics at Hope College and Janet's office was just down the hall from mine. She was 47, joined the faculty at Hope in 1991 and appointed chair around 2000.
Low visibility at an intersection was the initial blame. This is why we didn't go to the movies on Thanksgiving -- years of living in the U.P. with heavy winters and twice as many years down here in West Michigan where the roads generally suck worse have convinced us that if you don't have to go out in it, stay home.
I feel awful. The math and science community at Hope is small and dedicated. This will hit hard.
The rush to go Christmas shopping the day after Thanksgiving is getting out of hand, especially the early deals at midnight or 5am or 6am. We had a woman trampled in the rush to get a cheap laptop deal. It's a bloody holiday weekend and the shopping industry wants people to bond not at home but in a department store. Can't we just let everyone sleep in after all that L-tryptophan?
Our Little Slice Of Friday
So we did our turkey today. Not doing it on Thursday means it's easy to run to the grocery store and buy things so we don't have to go shopping again for a while. When we were in the U.P., we ended up with large 20 pound plus birds from the organic co-op. I think we maxed at 23-24 lbs. Lots of leftovers, terrific turkey barley soup, etc. Down here we did 15-18 lbs. for a while and now we're down to 13 lbs. and not hosting any company. So we'll have a good amount of leftovers and all, but not quite the endless turkey parade of the past. The smaller birds are a lot less of a production, making it almost "easy".
We do stuffing both inside and outside the bird -- tastes too good to worry about the worst case scenario and we make sure that we cook thoroughly and give the bird a good standing time to keep cooking after it's pulled from the oven. The dark meat, i.e. the good part was lovely and juicy and fell from the carcass without using a knife at all. The cats got some of the white meat. This year we tried a variation in the gravy. I'd heard a piece on the radio Wednesday about using wine in the gravy and my wife said you could use beer, too. So it was a cup of drippings, a cup of broth from the giblets and a cup of Leinenkugel's Berry Weiss beer. Oh yum, very thick tasting.
And now we have leftovers and turkey sandwiches to look forward to. Double-yum!