As strange as the title reads it was true, we did have our own not so little, Thanksgiving in France yesterday. All week I had been thinking about what to write about. What would people reading this blog back in Atlanta want to hear about? What stories and events were happening this week that, once written about, could shape someone’s choice for attending GTL? I wracked my brain everyday trying to partake in meaningful things, and remember each moment, perhaps one fleeting one could represent a post, perhaps not.
In what now seems like a huge blur, I remember first seeing the huge feast before my eyes and being overcome with happiness. Walking in my eyes were instantly drawn to all the orange. The room had been stripped of its usually black chairs and tables and filled with wooden tables with bench seating like at a picnic. The tables were covered with bright orange tablecloths that really reminded you of home. Turning left I finally saw the bounty. It had been a long time since I had seen such “American” portions and boy, were they magnificent. Three or four tables had to be set up stretching the length of the entire room, just to hold all the food. And as the line, more of a mob in truth, formed by the table people kept coming, bringing more and more food.
Finally I got my chance: the line cleared, and I made my way to the table. As the line crawled forward, everyone was so excited, trying food from each plate. By the middle of the table the feast had turned into an ethnic party. People brought in their own versions of family recipes of thanksgiving classics – blackberry jam, roasted carrots, sausage stuffing, mac and cheese, mashed potatoes with skins, and more. The list went on and on. Much like the party that started once we sat down. As the benches began to sag as we ate our fills GTL’s mood felt festive. Halloween had passed us by and while some were festive and dressed up most didn’t partake, but this was different.
This really hit home when the slide show started. Around the time most of us began attacking the desserts, both French and American, the lights descended. This was our cue to turn and face the projector. As the slides showed the memories and locations it really hit me and most likely everyone else, just what this semester had been. Truly remarkable, a real gift! While each week we would stress about the ins and outs of school work, money, or other troubles we still made great memories. Each photo represented a thousand words, amazing stories of things no one here will ever forget. As the lights subsides for the second time we all rose in applause of not just Hannah for making the show, the hardworking chiefs who made this great meal, and not just Abbie and Jack for planning it, but to all who had witnessed and partook in this incredible semester.