As the year is starting to come to an end and a new one about to begin, let us here at TP say what we are thankful for. For us Americans, Thanksgiving is right around the corner and Christmas not too far off from that. I am back in the US this year for both of them for the first time in three years as I have been gone the last three serving in the Navy in England. I spent last Thanksgiving at one of my American mates house in St. Austell, doing as we Americans do on Thanksgiving, watching the football game on TV, N-F-L Football, not football-football, but surprisingly there were more British there then us, who have over the years since having so many American friends, now celebrate Thanksgiving as well.
I spent last Christmas in Rome, Italy on a month vacation away from the Navy and had one of the best Christmases of my life as I spent it in the Yellow Hostel along with 40 or more travellers just like myself, from all over the world. Everyone chipped in 5 Euro and a few of the staff went down the street and bought the largest chineese food take away I had ever seen in my entire life, it was enough to fill a couple of tables and was more than enough for everyone to get seconds and thirds. After eating and stuffing ourselves so full of MSG that we could not move, we stayed up late and played cheesy hostel truth or dare, mostly dare, games, that had people doing jumping-jacks in the streets with thier knickers on their head to singing jingle bells to the whole hoste while standing on the bar. We had only a small, charlie brown christmas tree, no presents, nor any sign of the "Commercial Christmas" anywhere to be found within the walls of the hostel. I then walked an hour all the way across Rome to Vatican City to see Pope John Paul II's last midnight mass and sat in the pouring rain inside St. Peter's Square as I did not have a ticket inside but watched it on the jumbo screen they had set up. Christmas for me is no longer the Christmas I once knew, my Chrstmas has no presents in it anymore but only the things that I am thankful for beneath its tree. This year it will be spending it with my family, who half of them I hardly recognize anymore since being away.
In light of all that has happened since last Christmas, starting with the boxing day tsunami that rocked Asia that killed hundreds of thousands of people, to the bomings in London that really struck close to home to me since living there the last few years, and up to the hurricanes that put millions to the streets in the USA this year. Be thankful this holiday season of everything you have cause I can gaurantee you have it better than most.
So let me be the first of TP to say what I am thankfull for this year.
I am thankful for SKY TV broadcasted NFL games, I am thankfull for little, whole in the wall, Chineese food places, that are open on Cristmas, and will gladly cook you up the largest take out order of egg fried rice and noodles that you have ever seen. I am thankful for being home, cause there really is no other place like it.
I want to see hundreds, maybe even thousands of posts to this one to see what all of you are thanful for this year.