Friday, January 13, 2012


Thanksgiving came in three parts for us this year.  Tuesday night, the 22nd was a potluck sort of a dinner at the high school that involved the local community.  About a hundred families from our school and a few hundred local Chinese families gathered for a turkey provided by the school and food brought from each family.  It was a great opportunity to meet the local crowd.  One of the local schools brought groups of their kids in costumes and there were performances.  Always enjoyable to see little kids in costume on stage - in any language.  Also always enjoyable to see the wise and expereienced up on stage performing in costume.  Quinn and Josephine enjoy posing with the celebreties.
The Seniors of Zhudi Town...Live!

The youth of Zhudi Town

Quinn and Josephine with the the Zhudi Kids

Of course Rob thought it was supposed to be Monday night so the whole family got geared up to go with out hot pan of lasagna courtesey of Zhang.  As we headed out through the cold night a neibor, when told where we were going, informed us that we were a day early.  So we turned around and had a yummy lasagna dinner to ourselves.  So the following night, Zhang prepared another wonderful noodle dish of some type and we headed out through the cold to school.

This time we were successful - at least in getting there.  Plenty of people we knew, and people we didn't, and plenty of food.  There was a raffle with plenty of good, and not so good prizes for which we didn't win any as Rob forgot to drop our tickets in the box.  Maybe next time.

Thanksgiving part II was Thurday night, the real thanksgiving night.  We celebrated this night with the Lauwens, (Eric, Mirjam, Femke, and Merrel) who had planned to go to Camiguin, Philippines, with us for Christmas, and also Quinn's buddy Adrian.  Bridget laid the ground work employing Mirjam to help gather the food prior to this wonderful celebration.  Wonderful and a bit pricey this year.  Insisting on Turkey, we found a tasty 14 pound butterball, frozen and exported from the US of A for a mere $75.  It cooked up wonderfully in our small but effective Chinese oven.
Mirjam, Rob, Quinn, Femke, Eric, Josephine, Adrian, Merrel
Spelling out our favorite word

You can see the joy and thankfulness in each of our faces in this photograph.  You also can see the apple in Adrian's mouth and the sheer delight on Josephine's face.  It really was a great occasion partly becuase we got to introduce the tradition to the Lauwens. Being Dutch, this was a foreign holiday to them.  We shared our stories of our own Rosenzweig-Reitan-Matuschek tradition as well as the family traditions Bridget and I both have had in the past.  Although we didn't dress up as pilgrams and Indians the Thankful spirit was with us.

It was on this night that we first heard of the concern of our big trip to Camiguin.  Eric, being an experienced Asian traveler gave me a wild look in his eye when he explained his mild concern at having his family fly into Cagayan de Oro and then having to take a 2 hour bus ride North.  More to come on this!

A Happy Thanksgiving to all.

Oh but that wasn't all.  Sunday afternoon, the 27th, The Hesse family invited over to their pad for a Thanksgiving dinner.  Jim and Marlene Hesse moved to Shanghai with their daughters Lexi (9th grade) and Kristina (5th grade) in August from Lone Tree Colorado.  Jim is an entrpreneuer and had been doing business here for a while before deciding to make the big move.  Regardless, it has been easy to make friends with them becuase of our similar backgrounds.  Jim finds out were flying through Mindano for Christmas and expresses concern.
    They had invited over a few other families and we had our third large and traditional thanksgiving dinner.  This was even mour authentic because Jim had downloaded the Detroit- Greenbay game which we got to watch albeit 3 days later.

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