Thanksgiving in China

Blog is up and running again, so now I can finally share our experience on thanksgiving in China. A local restaurant, a cross between Cora’s and St Hubert’s, is owned by a fellow Canadian, and he hosts a thanksgiving meal for Canadian and American Thanksgivings. We go quite often for breakfasts and we saw the menu and decided to try it. It was quite expensive, as turkey is expensive to buy here.  We had the traditional meal with turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, carrots and mashed potatoes and gravy. Now remember this is China so there has to be a twist! The potatoes were mashed with garlic and I cannot eat garlic as it upsets my stomach… and garlic here is really bad, affects me worse than home. So I asked for a substitute since they could not give me plain mashed. I had turpids… which was how they say and spell turnip! We also had a salad and soup for a starter. I was full and barely finished my plate. The server asked if I would like to take the rest home and I said yes. She then asked how I would like my meat. I said excuse me? She said your beef how would you like it? Surprised I said… what there is more? I am so full! She said take a bite and I will wrap the rest for you. They came out with prime rib and baked potato! The butter was lemon butter and it was SO good. We had enough food to feed 4 or 5 people! (so I had lunch and dinner for the next day). To finish off we even had pumpkin pie for dessert… with whip cream. The pie tasted a bit “meaty”, yes meaty and we figure they cooked it with the beef and it picked up some of the flavour… yum beefy pumpkin pie… it was a bit odd, but you couldn’t really place the flavour at first, so you keep eating and trying to figure out what it is. The pie didn’t have enough of that pumpkin pie spice either. Strange combo, but everything else was very good.

On the Monday at school I had the children write about things they were thankful for and gave them each a little Canadian flag pin. Many of them still wear the pins or have placed them on their backpacks. I did an assembly with all the year 3s and showed them photos of Canada and talked about thanksgiving and harvest.

Thanksgiving made me a bit homesick, for the first time since we have been here, as I missed the cool crisp air, changing leaves and smell of cooking turkey and pies.   It has been nice that the temperatures are still warm here and during the day it is usually between 21-25*c… nights can be down to 14-21*c. October is said to be the perfect weather here… although the locals find it cold and wear pants, long sleeves, jackets and some even have winter coasts on! The local stores even have the heat blasting… I thought I would pass out it gets so hot; that heat that is dry and makes you dizzy. What are they going to do when it gets really cold? The locals think we are crazy Canadians from the “great white north” and we can take the cold. Chinese teachers at school ask if I am cold and have to touch my bare skin and shiver when I am wearing short sleeves. A local lady last night was in awe when she saw John in shorts and a t-shirt… she said something and Chinese and rubbed her arms like “brrr” John said strong and showed his muscle… she understood and pointed at him and mirrored back the strong muscle arm. She was wearing pants and a jacket (I had on a dress, light sweater and one of those wrap scarves, so in comparison I was also “under dressed”). They laugh and think we are crazy. I said I am usually the one that is so cold all the time and I am still warm/comfortable, must be all the heat still stored in me from the unbearable heat in Aug and Sept!

Stay tuned for more adventures in China…

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3 thoughts on “Thanksgiving in China

  1. Freda Goulet

    I loved the bit about “turpids”…that is hilarious! Sounds like an interesting pumpkin pie too. We had our traditional Thanksgiving dinner in Tampa…all the trimmings. Ronda was happy to get dressing that wasn’t corn bread, and brown gravy instead of white!! I’m glad that you enjoyed thanksgiving in China!

  2. Linda

    Hi Diana: I really enjoyed reading about Thanksgiving in China. What an experience. I am with you when it comes to the garlic!!! The leaves are changing here but we have lost a lot of them due to high winds so the effect is not the same. The days are definitely colder–down to zero at night and a brushing of snow on the mountains. Enjoy the warm temps while you can and keep us posted. Hugs. Linda

  3. Amy

    Hi Diana,

    I loved reading about your interesting meal. Sounds like you and John are really soaking up the culture and enjoying the differences. Do you still plan to come home at Christmas?

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