When we lived in the USA, in the early 1990s, one of the things we particularly liked was the celebration of Thanksgiving. This is on the last Thursday of November, and is when families gather from all over the country. The meal is somewhat like a traditional Christmas meal - roast turkey with trimmings for the main course, with extra side dishes such as green bean casserole, or the one we never quite came to terms with - jello salad. The desserts are mainly pies - apple, pecan, pumpkin, and others.
We celebrated Thanksgiving a couple of times when we returned to the UK, but since coming to Cyprus have not done so. However, this year there are some Americans in the house group which meets in our home on Fridays. We thought it was about time we had a social evening, so we decided to have a Thanksgiving style meal this Friday. Various people offered various dishes, and we said we'd cook the turkey.
A glib promise, it turns out.
In December, turkeys can either be bought frozen, or fresh ones can be ordered in advance. But in eleven years, this is the first time we have thought about cooking turkey in November. So, this morning after the toddler group where I help, I walked to Metro supermarket. I looked in the freezer section - no turkeys. So I went to the meat counter. 'Are you doing turkeys this week?' I asked, assuming they would get out their book and take my order.
The girl behind the counter looked a bit surprised, then shrugged, and said, 'No - not now. No turkeys until Christmas.'
I was surprised. There are, after all, a fair number of Americans living in Cyprus, so I'd have thought turkey would be much in demand at this time of year.
On the way home, I called into Orphanides Express, our small local supermarket which is connected with the big Orphanides store. I asked the same question, and received basically the same answer. They told me they would be taking orders from December 15th. Which isn't very useful when we'd like one this Friday!
I texted a friend who told me she's going to a Thanksgiving celebration on Thursday. I asked where her host would be getting the turkey... the reply said they were serving chicken.
Oh well. I suppose we'll be doing the same. Unless anyone who reads this happens to know of anywhere in Larnaka where turkeys ARE available in November...