I wish, I wish, I wish I was a wishing well. On Thanksgiving morning I was wishing that I could find more motivation to get something done. The amazing thing is that I was able to muster enough enthusiasm to get anything accomplished whatsoever. Even brushing my teeth was an accomplishment. I was just not feeling the holiday spirit, as they say.
Nor was I in the mood or frame of mind to be driving all the way to Metuchen, New Jersey where my family usually reunites for the traditional Thanksgiving Dinner. The drive takes about two hours down the New Jersey Turnpike from Philadelphia to Exit 11. New Jerseyans all identify each other by what exit they must take off the Turnpike to get home. I knew that giving in to the urge to call and cancel out was a sorry thing to do no matter how good the excuse. Blame it on the weather or blame it on the Bosa Nova. In the end I knew that I would be throwing on some holiday appropriate clothes. I knew that I would be getting the car and heading for the Turnpike despite my misgivings and the nasty weather mostly because of the tradition of it all. Say what you will old traditions definitely do die hard.
The weather was seasonal, blustery with some snow, hail and rain in the forecast for the rest of the day. Truth be told, this kind of blustery weather was actually my favorite kind of weather for sleeping in with a good book and the newspaper. My two cats were way ahead of me, already curled up for a nice long afternoon’s snooze. The roads were soaked and dangerous with fall leaves everywhere making the going even more slippery. To go or not to go? How inviting the old, soft couch in my living room seemed. I would have loved to just take a short nap, to calm myself down. Short naps, however, can be dangerous. I know that short naps can turn into long naps, especially with football games playing on the tube. It is so easy to find a hundred excuses not to do something that you really do not want to be doing in the first place.
My daughter lives in Charlotte, NC. My brother and his family live in West Palm Beach, Fla. And my sister and her family live in Delray Beach, Fla. Another niece lives in San Ramon, Ca. and her sister and family live in Wash. DC. Only my New Jersey nieces live close enough for a holiday get together. With a family that is so scattered to the winds it is hard to make family get togethers work in a way that accommodates everyone’s needs and schedules.
So in the end, despite all of our misgivings and procrastinating, we usually end up doing the most expeditious thing in most cases. After all no one really wants to be left alone on Thanksgiving, do they? And I do hate disappointing people, letting them down, especially when they are counting on me to do something for them. I’ve already done way too much of that sort of thing in the course of my life. And I do not like it when the tables are turned and I am counting on someone to do me a favor and they let me down. So it works both ways. I let you down, you let me down, we let each other down –where does it all end? Better to break the cycle and just do the things that we commit ourselves to do in the first place. And in that vein, let me take this opportunity to wish all of my friends and relatives a very happy and safe Thanksgiving, 2010.