Posted by: pckatie | November 28, 2013

Tropical Thanksgiving 2013!

As you might know from my previous post, I am currently living on a small island in the Caribbean called San Andres.  I was invited here for a month to work as a teacher trainer in an English immersion workshop being put on by the Colombian Ministry of Education.  But more on that later, for now, let’s get on to the important stuff.  THANKSGIVING!

It might be the middle of November...but tropical islands don't care!

It might be the middle of November…but tropical islands don’t care!

Last Thanksgiving was my first really big holiday that I have ever been away from my family, but luckily I survived by celebrated with all of Peace Corps Colombia in a huge gringo gathering (read about it here or see pictures here).  This year, I am celebrating in tropical paradise.  I am here with two other volunteers (Kait and Nina) and we decided that it is entirely possible to put on a real Thanksgiving dinner no matter where you are (with a few substitutions of course)!  We set out asking for information from locals, hunting down the bigger super markets on the island, and finally did our big shopping trip where we were able to find everything we needed.

Shopping at Super Todo

Shopping at Super Todo

Our Thanksgiving dinner consisted of:

TURKEY! (Lovingly prepared…including a butter massage…by Nina)

First it got a bath.

First he got a bath.

Then he got a butter massage.

Then he got a butter massage.

Then he got cooked to a beautiful golden brown.

Then he got cooked to a beautiful golden brown.

Stuffing, cranberry sauce (kind of) , pumpkin (ok fine….it’s ahyuama) pie, and apple pie (expertly made by Kait)

Pumpkin (or ahuyama if you want to get technical) and apple pies!

Pumpkin (or ahuyama if you want to get technical) and apple pies!

Mashed potatoes, green beans, and corn (masterfully cooked up by yours truly)

I'm pretty talented in the kitchen.

I’m pretty talented in the kitchen.

We live in a ‘posada nativa’ which means we have a host family as well as four Colombian teachers living next door.  In true Thanksgiving spirit, we decided to invite them to partake in our celebration with us, and they very enthusiastically accepted.

We had to work in the morning, and then we came home in the afternoon and were beyond excited to discover that we were getting NBC and the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade was just about to begin!  We spent the afternoon watching the parade, hearing all about the Black Friday craziness, learning how to cook a turkey, and rounded it off in good American fashion with a few episodes of Keeping Up with the Kardashians.

Al!

Al!

We cooked dinner and sat down to eat around 7:30pm and everything turned out wonderful!  While it might not be exactly the same as when my mama and grandma are cooking (and Dad on the turkey of course!), it was delicious and very special because I got to share it with new friends with whom I am sharing such an amazing experience.

The spread.

The spread.

And the feast began.

And the feast began.

The chefs!

The chefs!

The Peace Corps has three main goals (which you can see here).  The second goal is ‘helping promote a better understanding of Americans on the part of the people served’.  I can’t think of a better (or more delicious!) way to meet that second goal than sharing the tradition of Thanksgiving with our new friends here in Colombia.

To all of my friends and family both old and new, I wish you a very happy Thanksgiving full of love and delicious food 🙂

Until next time…..paz y amor.

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