Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The Magic of Thanksgiving

Around the holidays, we do get magical. Can't help it. This, for me, is a magic story.

A couple of weeks ago, I visited a longtime friend in East Texas. For you roustabouts who don't know anything about the very large state of Texas,this means a 100 miles or so east of DFW Metroplex.The sweet gum were coloring. So were the oak and maple. The sun was blooming for the first time in a week.
But the weather was so mild the flowers, particularly the roses, were still blooming.
My friend has a beautiful home in 11 acres of gardens, trees, meadows and stock tank. Wow.

Along with the superb coconut creme pie she made from scratch, she showed me her favored china. She opened the door, and asked, " Do you remember this?" She pulled out a blue serving plate rimmed with gold trim, with six matching plates.

My face convulsed. She was alarmed. She said ,"You can have it back if you want to," and I am proud to say only for a moment did I want to.Because when I got all my gandmother's china, when I realized what she had, I realized it was too much. I sold a lot of it. I lost some in storage, and I gave some of it away. Ultimately,
I lost it all. But I gave some of it to persons I loved. Anita was one of them.

When I visited Anita and saw the plates, in a way I had never acknowledged I realized what I had lost, and what I had gained.l saw that I inherited, never owned, my grandmother's china. At the same time I realized by giving these few plates away,I had them forever, in the home I gave them to.

No wonder she had trouble reading my face. I am so proud that once upon a time I don't even remember I gave them to her. I don't even remember it except peripherilly. But at least I knew even then that she was important. I gave the gold-gilded plates to someone I loved 40 years ago. And we still love each other.

Well, she will have her Thanksgiving and so will will I. I don't know what plates will be used in either place. We don't own them, y'all. We simply use them while we are here. I still own the memories of my grandmother, my father, my mother. The plates bring them more to mind. But I don't need them to remember.

That is all. Thanksgiving is hope for the future. I have been blessed. How about you?