Some people call it Turkey day. Some people look forward to it solely for the sales that come the next day. For some it's a footnote for the ramp up to Christmas. The traditions of gathering the family together and having large meals, and even the foods that are eaten have been so ground into our culture that even in the army, it is one of the few occasions that the food doesn't taste like reprocessed partially deflated beef fatty tissue, or canned beans that somehow survived since Korea.
It is a time of family. It is a time where the whole family gathers from whatever divergent parts of the country they are from and converges on the house hold of the patriarch (or matriarch) usually the grand parent's house. there three generations gather give thanks, catch up and for a little bit, either pretend not to hate each other (and hold grudges from childhood) or truly appreciate each others company. Whatever the case it is not a time ANYONE wants to spend alone or heaven forbid, working.
As with last year, I not only worked, but I also went to eat at SSG Garza's place. Ann, as always threatened to get violent if everyone didn't have 7ths and 8ths. it was a feast to behold. Avery, and two of his friends played Halo against Gil and I. It was a hoot. i'd kill the two kids and they'd ask why they got shot by the other (i don't think they figured out it was me killing them the whole time) or, what's even funnier, they'd run (not really in circles, more like a figure 8, randomly shooting, and more often than not hitting each other). I laughed so hard, and for the first time i actually beat Avery (i know getting beat down by a 12 year old is pathetic, but c'mon it's Halo!). In this place, where i have no family and few friends, it is always great to get together. The army has become my family. We are always missing our families, that's why many times we form close bonds that last a life time.
It is a time of family. It is a time of togetherness, and, unfortunately for those poor souls in the army, it is also a time of tremendous idiocy. While most everyone is off on a 4 day weekend, certain cervices, namely the ER remain open. I have never been able to understand why there are always so many traumas come holiday time. Last year it was folks that had sliced their wrists open cutting turkey, and gunshot wounds. This year it was stabbings. two to be exact. I find myself wondering, when we are suppose to be getting closer, why are we always getting more injuries, and hatred?
what i do know, is that when the feast is over, and we have all waddled off to bed, the dreams we dream after our chaotic get together, are often the best and most peaceful. I am so much more content when i am with people that are close like family. We live in a world that is so diverse, and multi-faceted. it is nice, once in a while to get together and have familiar jaunts into memory lane, have great conversations of happy times, and for a few moments forget the cares of the world.