Until this past Thursday I had never been away from my family for a holiday. And if I can help it, I never will be again. never. ever. ever.
Thanksgiving morning I had a normal breakfast (read: two rounds of bread with a smidgin of peanut butter and jelly and a cup of tea) and headed off to school. Class was quite typical.
I returned home after school to what my host mother deemed a “special” lunch for Día de Acción de Gracias. Apparently what made it special was that we had a large chunk of beef to eat with potatoes instead of rice and some tasty concoction of veggies and chicken, as normal. While I did enjoy the beef, I would have preferred one of the usual dishes. It is funny how she considers having a piece of tough beef as opposed to the delicious, creamy concoctions we eat daily, to be “special.” I would say the exact opposite.
After lunch I hung around the house for a while and checked on what had been left for me for supper (nothing good) before heading to school. On the way I stopped at a supermercado and bought a small bottle of drinkable yogurt, just because it was Thanksgiving, not because I was hungry or thirsty.
At school I spent about an hour and a half skyping with various family and extended maternal family members who were gathered, as always, at Grandma M.’s house. It was wonderful! Eventually, everyone had to go down to the giant, traditional bonfire. *sigh* After waisting a few more minutes on the computer catching up on various websites, I packed up and stepped out into the growing darkness around 6:30.
On the way home I first popped in to my favorite pastry place to purchase the pye de manzana (apple pie) I had been mentally saving for Thanksgiving. I asked for it “para llevar,” to go. As is customary for pastries here, “para llevar” meant that they placed my piece of pie on a styrofoam tray and placed the tray in a plastic bag. With my bag of pie clutched in one hand I walked over a few blocks to Avenida el Sol to find another, more expensive and slightly upscale pastry and sandwich shop where I had previously eaten an empanada de ají de gallina: a pastry filled with shredded chicken in a creamy, bright yellow, somewhat spicy sauce. They were out. And their regular empanadas de carne (beef) cost S/5! So, I left there and purchased an empanada de carne for half the price at a pastry and cake shop just a few shops down the road. I arrived home with a pastic bag of pastry in each hand and my backpack on my back around 7:00.
I threw my backpack on my bed, gathered the necessary items for my Thanksgiving supper, and brought everything to the kitchen.
And here are pictures to illustrate the rest: