Friday, November 27, 2009


Happy Thanksgiving everybody! I figure no one's reading this as you're all tackling each other at the local Walmart for those black-Friday specials, but you'll have to come down from your turkey high sometime.

First, we got invited over to a company potluck at the CEO's house. We were stumped to see a 1:00 meet time. Did Mike not have to work (the guys don't normally get off for American holidays)? Nope. Cool. Well, he already had some appointments and needed to make sure his guys were set up to do what they do, so he worked in the morning while I made our "famous" Chinese cole slaw. Not exactly thanksgiving-y, but we knew no one else would bring such a thing so was safe and usually get a good response with it, so why not? The house was beautiful and because it was on the ocean-side had a great breeze (and no mosquitoes). The views weren't too bad either!

There were quite a few people, and A LOT of food. It was a casual affair, and yet so organized, we took notes so we could replicate it when we finally get around to throwing our own bash. Gotta have a kiddy table!

Plate number 1. Corn pudding, mashed potatoes, macaroni & cheese, salad, plantains, yams (with nutmeg, yummy), our cole slaw, another corn dish, mmmmmmm.

Of course, there was the after-dinner plop out on the patio. The hostess tried to interest folks in a game of ping pong to work off some of that gravy, but she was simply met with a chorus of content groans.

Then it was back to our place to feed the kitties, a nap for Michael, and then off to dinner #2 at Jose's. He's actually within walking distance, so we figured we could just roll back down the hill to our place on our bulging stomachs after we finished the 2nd meal.

Jose (the one giving thanks in the picture) loves people and really strives for diversity at his parties, so it was quite a mish-mash of guests. People were represented from Peru, Michigan, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, St. Kitts, all over...I was talking to a young woman from Cuba and learned all kinds of interesting things. She said she could make more from selling pizza there than being a lawyer (maybe the U.S. should figure out how to do that - sorry Kristen). If you're caught with beef in your fridge (and they do look) you can go to jail for longer than if you actually killed a person. Beef is for tourists and government officials only. A teacher makes about $16/month and jeans cost about $20U.S. Try having kids on a salary like that. The Peruvian runs 3 stores here with plans for more once the Peninsula starts getting populated (he told me there's a publication he advertises in that is an entertainment guide like I want to do, but I'm not finding it online - which means it's not a very good marketing tool, is it?). It was a lot of fun talking with everyone, but we are going to have to brush up on our Spanish.

Jose's mom actually flew in from Puerto Rico to help cook and his young son had a good time playing host as well. They even made a veggie lasagna for us non-meat eaters (we weren't the only ones). This one was a little more of a free-for-all, but after a prayer reading in Spanish from the mom, and a few speeches from Jose & anyone else that wanted to make one, it was time to eat...again.

Plate #2 (actually 3 for Mike, he had seconds at the earlier eating session + dessert!). Lasagna, rice, and salad. Mmm mmm good.

We waddled back to our place around midnight. Today, Mike (and his retaliating stomach) works another 1/2 day, will likely pass out in between football games, and then we're off to a showing of a friend's art and some wine tasting (why do they serve wine at art shows - do the paintings look better when you're drunk?). We really need a picture over the bed, so are hoping we like and can afford something. Time to go take a walk!