Two days left before the holiday season kicks off with Thanksgiving. For us, a little bit hectic but not like it was when we had two sets of families to juggle with visits. Now, we are pretty much all residing in Maryland and my brother hosts many of the holidays.
My mom lives about 30 miles east of us, and my brother about 30 miles southeast near Annapolis. Both are easy rides. I am thankful we can avoid the holiday traffic on the highways. I remember when I was still going to Hopkins at night to study electrical engineering and we had class the night before Thanksgiving. We worked in Silver Spring. I never made it to class. Sat for three hours trying to get up the highway to Baltimore. So, I am very thankful I still have family locally.
I am thankful they found my collapsing discs before I had permanent nerve damage, and that I had a great neurosurgeon repair it. Health is something we take for granted when we are young, and don’t know how hard it is to recover from injuries or illnesses as we get older. I still have bad days after doing things for the first time since the operation. A little Tylenol and I cope. It could have been life changing if I hadn’t found out in time.
I am thankful my husband and I could retire and enjoy it. Enjoying our hobbies, our friends, the local events and get togethers. Finding my niche at the Conservancy to still feel useful.
Him connecting with the radio clubs and getting to do something he loved as a teenager. Something he gave up when we lived in Columbia in a town house. Having fun at field day every year.
Putting up the antennas and getting on the air is his hobby. No, he doesn’t play golf. He never wanted a boat. All those hobbies that many people have, he wasn’t into those things. His hobby is practiced right in the rec room, on his radios. Maybe I do get a little tired of “CQ contest, CQ contest” for up to 48 hours. I like the CW (Morse Code) contests better. I can’t hear him using the keyer. Phone contests I get to hear him call stations and give the proper exchanges to validate a contact.
I am thankful we went through the derecho and the hurricane with minimal damage. We were counted among the lucky ones. For that, we are making sure we help those who still need help. Giving clothing, non perishable foods, toiletries, and contributions where we can. We lost a few trees. We lost some food after the derecho. Nothing earth shattering for us. We know we were very fortunate. The largest ones were caught in others and missed our home.
I am thankful we live in such a pleasant and relatively safe environment. Even with all its warts, this country and, personally for us, this area are peaceful. Civil unrest, riots, financial crises like those across the pond, we are relatively insulated here. I am thankful I got my degree, thanks largely to encouragement from the good nuns in my high school. They insisted I take math and science. From thinking I would do a business curriculum and get a job in Baltimore at 18, to getting to go to college and major in math. Without that push, I would have had a vastly different life. Instead, I got to experience amazing things.
I am glad the Dream Act passed. Education is key to making a life better. Any type of education. I learned that. So did my husband. Both of us worked our way through college, and made better lives for ourselves. Without that education, we wouldn’t be retired and enjoying life. I am so eternally grateful to our parents for helping us, even though they struggled. My dad was a policeman. His dad a coal miner, then a factory worker. We know that our education, his in engineering, mine in math and computers made us marketable and employable, even during the recession in the seventies when we graduated.
We have much to be thankful for. Thursday we are off to visit my family and celebrate the traditional turkey day the way we have for many years. Dinner, a nice long walk, then some football.
Today is CSA day. We are getting good things for my dinner. Tomorrow I pick up my Maple Lawn turkey. Then, off to England Acres to get a centerpiece and some things that won’t be in my CSA box today.
This weekend our little private personal Thanksgiving, a tradition we started years ago when I wanted to learn how to cook a turkey, we will give thanks again for what we have.
Happy Thanksgiving to all my cyber readers, and my cyber circle of locavores.