As millions of Americans cross to-do’s off their holiday checklists, I am busy with Thanksgiving planning of a different sort. I’ve yet to master the art of boiling water. My idea of playing hostess maxes out around offering guests lukewarm tap water and a luxurious loo experience (Yes, I did splurge on 2-ply toilet paper. Yes, you are welcome.). Mostly, I can think of a whole slew of things I rather dig my hands into than the backside of a rubbery turkey. May he rest in peace…. and a heavenly river of gravy. No, I won’t be cooking, cleaning, or fretting over entertaining the masses this Thanksgiving.
We are headed for my sister’s country abode to celebrate turkey and Indians with family. She’ll handle the turkey-loving, the cooking, the cleaning, and probably the adult supervision of my kid, too. I can’t be bothered with the burdensome details of child-rearing when there’s important business like fourth helpings to tend to. While my domestic diva of a sibling straps on that frilly apron and gets to crafting delicious dishes, I’m left with one task to complete before turkey time.
The kid’s bag is easy enough: diapers, more diapers, some pants as we will be expected to feign civilized etiquette, and diapers.
The dude’s bag is even simpler still: pants, sweater vest, pants, and Aspirin. He pauses to contemplate a few hours in the car with me and tucks a discreet bottle of whiskey beneath his finest Cosby sweater.
My travel essentials for this very special holiday are a bit more extensive. My two trunks, three rolling suitcases, and Hello Kitty backpack trump the boys’ one, shared gym bag.
To the untrained eye I’m sure my excessive luggage reeks of a high-maintenance housewife. Perhaps a stranger would assume I am the demanding sort, requiring a bell hop and fork lift to tote my privileged stuff to and fro. Defying stereotypes, I can tell you that my quarter ton of junk contains no hair dryer, makeup, no sparkling shoes or pressed ensembles. If we’re really getting honest, I don’t even plan on packing a bra. Instead, I’ve spent many a year perfecting holiday leisure:
-32 Pair of X-Treme Stretch yoga pants: Pre, Mid, and Post- meal variations in sizes ensure comfort while performing
downward dog tree pose fork to plate combat. Namaste, casserole. Namaste.
– 10 piece tupperware set: I’d hate to see leftovers go to waste.
– Pumpkin Spice Febreeze: Like a housewarming gift and an apology from my intestines rolled into one, fresh can.
– Guzzle Guzzle for Gobble Gobble Day: A box of wine will liven any sophisticated gathering, or at least make my seat at the kid’s table a little less uncomfortable.
– Cassette Tape: “Savages” from Disney’s Poccahontas offers mood-setting melody, a reminder to fellow diners at the kid’s table that white people are downright dreadful, and an educational opportunity for the young ones to learn about genocide over juice cocktails and mac-n-cheese.
– Queen-sized Air Mattress: For my sister, the gracious host, to snooze on while I take a Tryptophan-induced nap in her King-sized slice of Tempurpedic heaven.
I can’t shake the feeling that I’ve left some must-have item off my list. I recount the stretchy knickers, the blow-up bed, the various tools for enlightening pint-sized guests of Thanksgiving horrors past. Before loading the last of my traveling circus into the trunk, I come across a doodle from my sister’s daughter.
Nunchucks. I knew I forgot something.
Wishing you a safe and happy holiday!