Wattle you be thankful for at the table?
Have you noticed wild turkeys have been rather clandestine over the past few weeks? They’re not as dumb as they claim to be.
I mean, they have been exhibiting themselves hither and yonder all year long, leaving calling cards about every 10th step. Now, when they could actually make something of themselves, they blow retreat. I don’t know where they go.
Do turkeys have hideouts in the hills to where they lam out and lie low? I recently joined a film noir group on Facebook. These hooligan birds probably raid old corn and pumpkin fields at night, storing up provisions to make it through the holidays.
Anyway, when I texted Lane that I’d dropped off two turkeys at the Medford Gospel Mission, he asked if they were from my yard. Imagine the look on the donation worker’s face when he wheels out the cart, I pop the trunk, and live turkeys fly out shouting obscenities.
Fred Meyer gives away free (frozen) turkeys this time of year if you spend $150, which is quickly achieved these days. I don’t need a whole, big turkey (Eddie, the cat, is shaking his head), but Access, Salvation Army, the missions and other food drives can definitely help those less fortunate money-wise to celebrate our day of thanks with a proper feast. It’s everyone’s holiday. I’m drooling for turkey and stuffing as I type.
As I left the mission in Giovanni the Honda, free to return to my warm home, I felt that familiar pang of thankful-sorrow, because everyone doesn’t share that security. Several homeless folks in the area pushed carts full of their lives, barely able to keep them moving. I knew the temperature had plummeted the night before. One man was wrapped like a cocoon in a colorful blanket and wearing a knitted beanie, and I hoped they kept him warm enough, since I reach for a throw even in a heated house. I wondered what his memories consisted of.
Percy Faith’s “The Theme from a Summer Place” floated out from Sirius/XM like a slap. It’s such a lilting, easy-breezy tune that conjures scenes of a sunny beach and young love. But it was actually cloudy and 35 degrees. Our world is a swirl of paradoxes, with ever-shifting stories from one corner or one car to the next.
I’m thankful for people who see ways to facilitate better outcomes for others. Like today, for example. I drove all the way to Shady Cove Ace Hardware because I was told they carried small bales of straw that I use for bedding for housing cold cats during winter. They do not carry them. I had already tried the Grange Co-Op, EP Hardware and Walmart.
I was miffed and grabbed for my phone to let the person know they had goofed. But, Laura Carroll. Laura works at Shady Cove Ace Hardware. She knew what I was looking for because she’d made a scarecrow for the store during the community Halloween promo and had three small bales she wasn’t using. She said I could have them for 10 bucks — a bargain, especially after driving all over when I should have been writing. I only had a check. She was OK with that.
She left her workplace, and I followed her to her home nearby where she gave me the generous bundles, which will keep whatever sleeps in my porch unit warm all winter and next. I asked her if she liked to read and handed her a copy of my novel, “Stone Revival.” I was touched that she would care enough to go to the trouble of meeting my paltry need. There are others like her.
I set aside one day of my year to give thanks? Only one? I’m thanking God for the ability to cultivate thankfulness and thoughtfulness — to learn the knack. I don’t have to search for reasons. As cliché as it sounds, I am thankful for the rain, for friends, a home, and for humble people everywhere who cause me to look inside.
Enjoy a meaningful and lip-smacking Thanksgiving, all.
Peggy Dover is a cranberry-loving freelance writer/author. Reach her at email@example.com, and if she doesn’t respond, she didn’t receive it.