Peruvian Thanksgiving

It's a weird feeling being outside of the US for Thanksgiving. Unlike other holidays, that are celebrated in the US and Peru, here no one knows much about Thanksgiving. If it weren't for my Facebook news feed or CNN, I probably would completely forget about the day. But thankfully, we have a small community of Americans in Lima who throw one impressive, traditional Peruvian feast.

There's an American girl in my class and her mom was sweet enough to bring me a slice of pumpkin pie last Thursday. As I ate my piece of pie, sweltering in the Peruvian summer heat, I realized how strange it was to be eating an autumn dessert at the onset of summer. But I'll take what i can get. That evening, I indulged in way too many carbs, delighting in two different stuffings and an array of casseroles. I skipped on dessert that evening, choosing to spend my calories on Stuffing Round Two.

After my second Thanksgiving in Peru, here's what I'm thankful for:

- My supportive family that loves me from afar and continually encourages me even on the toughest days.
- Alvaro, for being my driver, translator, cultural ambassador, dictionary, body guard and sounding board for this past year.
- For his family who have taken me in like a daughter by loving and protecting me.
- My job, because I am fully aware that it is by grace that I am in this position. My complete experience in Peru changed when I was offered this position.
- For this feeling of adaptation that has allowed me to feel more comfortable and independent in this strange place.
- For the days when my Spanish rocks.
- For the days when my Spanish is awful, they remind me that I still have a lot to learn.
- For all my children, they may drive me crazy but I love them to pieces.
- For my next year in Peru, that I may learn and more fully understand this foreign land.
- For my sweet Emmaline who has been my constant companion and brave soul on this expat journey.

And the most timely thanks: that in 22 days I'll be hopping continents and headed towards four full weeks in the USA.