19    Nov 20126 comments

Holiday: Talking Turkey

Holidays“Gobble, gobble” to everyone who celebrates Thanksgiving!

This wonderful family holiday is celebrated by Americans around the world, no matter where they live. It's the time for families to get together and share a delicious feast. The day often includes watching football on TV and planning for “Black Friday” shopping deals!

It is a genuine family holiday and many of us have touching or hilarious stories about Thanksgivings past.

MyHeritage invites you to share your funny stories for the chance to win a one-year PremiumPlus membership. Simply comment on this post or post comments on our Facebook wall or, if you can fit it into 140 characters, tweet them @myheritage. The winning story will be announced on Friday.

Since I can’t participate in the competition as I'm part of the MyHeritage team, here’s my hilarious holiday story.

My husband and I were living in Teheran a very long time ago and I began preparing for “Turkey Day” – the literal translation of what we called the holiday. Turkeys were generally sold in parts in those days, and, in fact, many families did not even have ovens. If they did, they were used for storing pots and pans.

We had a great stove with an oven and I needed a turkey. I went to one of the modern supermarkets and told them I needed a whole turkey, cleaned (I did specify that!) and delivered to the house early on Thursday morning so I could stuff and roast it for our American friends who were joining us. “No problem,” said the manager. That alone should have been a red flag.

Thursday arrived, the stuffing was made, the pumpkin pies ready.  The only thing missing was Mr. Turkey. Even the table was set and ready. I had scoured all the stores that often sold American specialty items (cranberry sauce, Miracle Whip for leftover sandwiches and pumpkin puree for the pies).

I started clock watching: 8am (the promised delivery time) came and went; 9am came and went. There were a few phone calls to the store manager. Finally, at about 10am, the doorbell rang. Into my waiting arms was thrust a large brown-paper wrapped parcel, suspiciously warm.

I ran to the kitchen, unwrapped it and nearly fainted. Here was a huge turkey with everything but the gobble. Feathers, neck, head, feet, beady little eyes – I mean EVERYTHING. Having never cleaned a turkey, let alone a chicken – although my grandmother was probably a wiz at such tasks – I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry and was doing both when my husband walked into the kitchen and saw the “thing” on the counter.

OK, I asked him, what do I do now? Always the fast thinker, he called his mother and told her about the problem (I could hear her laughing over the phone) and asked if we could borrow her maid to help with the problem. Sure, she said, come pick her up.

He came back with the woman, who was also laughing hysterically over an American bride who didn’t know how to clean a bird, inside or out. Thankfully, she performed that task in record time, and Mr. Turkey looked just fine, stuffed and trussed and sitting in his pan in the oven. It was delicious!

We tell this story every Thanksgiving, and it is still funny. The moral of the story: Beware large brown-paper parcels that are suspiciously warm. At least the turkey was fresh, having been dispatched so recently!

Now, what’s your best story about the holiday? Did you celebrate it in some exotic locale? Did something funny happen? Something touching? What are your traditions for the holiday?

We’re waiting to read them, so share them in the comments below.

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Comments (6) Trackbacks (0)
  1. During the Thanksgiving holidays, my brother Ward was home from his university studies. Even though he was a veteran of four years in the Marine Corps during World War II, his sense of humor was still remarkably intact. As part of a taxidermy class, he was required to practice his new skills on a mouse. He decided to add a little extra humor to the festivities by placing this stuffed mouse under our uncle's napkin. (Since our aunt was the excitable type, we had to warn her about this ahead of time.)When Uncle Rusty removed the napkin to place it on his lap, the mouse fell from the table onto his lap. Everyone,including our uncle, dissolved into laughter.
  2. Being from a large family 7 kids and my parents. Every Thanksgiving mom would cook the large turkey dad got from work, mashed taters, gravy made from scratch, salad, noodles made from scratch, stuffing, veggies,deviled eggs, salad, biscuits and homemade pie. It became a tradition for me getting caught sneaking bites of the stuffing while the turkey was still in the oven. Mom still reminds me to this day. While mom was cooking the meal us kids watched the parade, took turns helping in the kitchen and kept busy.
  3. One year my mother-in-law was going to go outside. She screamed when she discovered a snake in her shoe.
  4. The first time we tried to deep fry the turkey my wife over estimated the time the bird needed to cook. when we all sat down to cave the bird it was just like the Griswalds on Christmas vacation. The first cut was followed by a PSST and the bird deflated. We laughed we cried and laughed again when our dogs would not even eat it....
  5. Four months into my marriage I was preparing Thanksgiving dinner when it came time to stuff the turkey (with Mom's famous sausage stuffing). The problem was that I couldn't find the cavity to stuff. At what I now know was the back end of Mr. Tom, I found a small cavity. Nope, that wouldn't fit all the stuffing. At the front end the legs had skin over them wrapped tightly and fastened underneath. Oh, my. It's 11pm. Time to call my parents 500 miles away. My Mom and Dad laughed so hard at my dilemma, and of course every relative now knows the story. Fortunately, with their help, I found how to open the cavity and retrieve the neck & giblets and learned how to stuff the turkey. These 41 years later I don't recall the dinner, but I do recall the laughter with dear Mom and Dad for whom I'm most thankful.
  6. My brother was old enough to talk but still small enough to sit in a high chair. After cleaning up his Thanksgiving dinner he loudly announced "Me Pie", and kept announcing it until he was served his own little piece of Thanksgiving Pie! That quieted him right down.

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