I was really looking forward to Thanksgiving this year. Steve is a bishop of a BYU ward and because most students do not go home for Thanksgiving the ward has a big Thanksgiving dinner. The students decided they wanted to wake up early and hike to Makapuu lighthouse. We would return about 1:00 p.m., pick up all the catered food and head to the church to eat. After eating we would all meet at the park for a game of football. Doesn't that just sound like the greatest Thanksgiving day? It sure did to me and I was excited. I wouldn't be slaving over the stove for two days and I could just take it easy. Anyone who has cooked a Thanksgiving dinner knows all the work that goes into it. The hardest thing is having everything ready at the same time to go on the table - the oven is going nonstop to cook the turkey, the fresh rolls, the desserts etc. In Hawaii where our electricity is at a premium (we always pay between $300-$400 monthly) that would even save us on our budget this month.
Everything went as planned. The hike was absolutely gorgeous. We hiked down from the lighthouse to the ocean where there were blow holes that the water spouted through every few minutes. (Remember my camera is not working properly so I have no pictures.) Tanner loved sticking his face as close as he could get it. He had the nicest hair style after a few blows. We even got introduced to the "pickle weed" which grows down on the rocks. We all ate several leaves and it truly tastes like a pickle. Three girls, from the Phillipines, got lost on the trail on their way back up and ran out of steam. They had to be rescued by the big strong guys from the ward. Other than that it was really a pleasant morning.
As we were driving home (Makapuu is on the other end of the island) I'm thinking how nice this day has been. The students picked up most of the food but Steve and I had to go get the turkeys. We went to the church and I'm slicing the turkey and getting hungrier by the minute. We offer a blessing on the food and the men let the woman go first to dish up. Naturally the first thing in line is rice. I pass it right up choosing instead to use that space for my mashed potatoes and gravy. That is really a treat here in Hawaii! After my plate was full I went back to the table and began to eat. The potatoes were fake! I couldn't believe it. Fake potatoes on Thanksgiving? I hear all the students around me saying how delicious everything is and I can't believe it. The salad was from a bag so it tasted like preservatives. The yams had been dumped out of a can with a few marshmellows thrown on top. I was really disappointed and so was the family! I guess with 80% of the ward from other countries they didn't even seem to notice this wasn't a real Thanksgiving dinner.
I really look forward to next year. I look forward to slaving over the stove, running up my electrical bill, trying to get everything on the table at the same time and still having it be warm. The more I thought about it the more I realized that you just don't get something great without hard work. I guess I have to learn that over and over again.