Monday, October 11, 2010

An American in Canada for Canadian Thanksgiving, eh?

Signature Afternoon Tea Service at Urban Tea Merchant in Vancouver's North Shore.
I've been in Canada several times for Canadian Thanksgiving. The first was back in the late '70s, when some Canucks invited us up north to celebrate their October feast in Egmont. All I remember is it took us a bazillion hours to get there from Whidbey Island, the food and wine were both plentiful, but it was a wee bit strange to be celebrating it a month early.

So here it is 2010, and once again I'm in BC for Canadian Thanksgiving. But I still can't figure out when they actually celebrate it with the full meal deal. Since their holiday is on a Monday, they most likely have their big turkey dinner on a Saturday or Sunday. If they had it on a Monday, then they'd have to go to work the following Tuesday, which wouldn't be good.

The best part about American Thanksgiving is that it's on a Thursday, which means turkey and all the trimmings on day one, leftovers on days two, three and four. A Canadian I met tonight said he was going to talk to Stephen Harper about changing the dates of Canada's Thanksgiving, as he thought ours made more sense. For once, the US does something right!

So what did I do on this national holiday in Canada? I spent the day and evening in Vancouver's North Shore, where I enjoyed a delicious Signature Afternoon Tea Service at The Urban Tea MerchantLater that evening, back at the Pinnacle Hotel at the Pier, I enjoyed several glasses of Mission Hill Cabernet-Merlot along with some vegetarian spring rolls, even though there was turkey on the hotel restaurant's menu.

I'll save my real Thanksgiving dinner for Thursday, Nov. 25, back at home with Farmer Bob. That's when about 16 friends and relatives will gather round our custom-built holiday table and feast on turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, cranberries and pumpkin and pecan pies.

As much as I love Canada, we Americans really do Thanksgiving right.


Anonymous said...

Most people have the big dinner on the Sunday with Monday being a recovery day. Canadian Thanksgiving is more about celebrating the harvest, which is why one of the reasons it's in October, the other is that there was no Stat holiday in October. The first Thanksgiving in Canada was in 1578. Google Martin Frobisher and Thanksgiving for more details. I personally prefer it in October since November already has a Stat holiday, Rememberance Day and the idea of having Thanksgiving so close to Christmas is not preferable to most Canadians. However it's all to what you are used to.

SUE FRAUSE said...

Thanks for the clarification. I received a lot of input (verbal!) while up on BC's Sunshine Coast for four days, and it did seem that Sunday was "the day." You're right, our Thanksgiving is too close to Xmas and also signals the start of Christmas ... although now it seems that Halloween kicks Christmas off! I know I love our four-day weekend (unless you're in retail, etc.) over Thanksgiving, plus three days of R&L (recovery and leftovers)!

Noel said...

Having celebrated both holidays over the years, I like aspects of both nations Thanksgiving celebrations. I like the four day weekend of the Yank celebration, but also like a three day long weekend in October, that the Canucks celebrate. Similar is the getting together with family and having Turkey, although I am not a big fan of the L-tryptophan falling asleep syndrome.

It's really moot to get into who celebrated Thanksgiving first as the Harvest feast has been celebrated all the way back to the Greeks, Romans, and Druids. Just saying...

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the info

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