Digital Dimdima
-By Rashmi Menon
Labor Day
The Community College
Hiking the Grand Canyon – II
Hiking the Grand Canyon – I
The Niagara Falls
Desert Dogs
The Sears Tower
The Navajo Code Talkers
Driving Through McDonalds
The Mighty Desert Warrior
The Big Roundup
Serving the Americans
Martin Luther King Day
Harvard University and Other Ivy League Schools
Winter Wonders
Las Vegas
Let’s Give Thanks!
Fall Colours
Halloween
The Collared Peccary
Hurricane Isabel
Wonders of Yellowstone
A Trip Under the Sea
The Legend of the Kokopelli
The Great Lakes of North America

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Let’s Give Thanks!

Hola friends! This past weekend has been a joyous one for Americans. We have just finished celebrating Thanksgiving, one of our favorite holidays. Thanksgiving is a special occasion when families gather together to offer thanks for the wonderful blessings they’ve enjoyed all year round. Most families celebrate the event by partaking of a sumptuous feast. Traditional meal favorites include stuffed turkey, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, cranberry sauce, thick brown gravy, and pumpkin or sweet potato pie.
The story behind Thanksgiving is a very old one. On September 6, 1620, a group of bounty hunters set sail for the “New World,” (America) from a place called Plymouth, in England. Their ship was called the Mayflower, and they were called the Pilgrim Fathers. After a long and arduous voyage, they finally sighted some land off the coast of Massachusetts. When they anchored their ship, they called their new home, Plymouth, after the port in England from where they had begun their adventurous journey.
The first settlers had to face a very severe winter that year. They survived, however, with the help of some friendly Indians (Native Americans). These Indian tribes taught the settlers how to cultivate corn and other native vegetables. Within a year’s time, the Pilgrims had acclimated themselves to their new environment. They reaped a bountiful harvest, and in celebration they put together a community feast. Of course, they invited their friends, the Indians, to share their bounty. The third year was once again a miserable one for the Pilgrims, because they were ravaged by drought. They decided to fast and pray for rain. Their efforts bore fruit, and in order to thank God for his mercy, November 29th of that year was proclaimed as the Day of Thanksgiving.
Eventually, by the year 1777, all the 13 British colonies in the United States began celebrating Thanksgiving. The whole thing became official when President George Washington declared a National Day of Thanksgiving. The date of the holiday kept changing, however, until the Congress sanctioned the fourth Thursday of November as the official day of Thanksgiving, in 1941.
Today, Americans look forward to this four-day weekend. Apart from the delicious food, they enjoy the time they get to spend with their loved ones. This is an exciting weekend for “shopaholics” (people who love shopping) because all the department stores offer huge sales on the Friday after Thanksgiving. People rush to the stores and wait in long lines to buy presents for themselves and their loved ones.
That’s it for this fortnight then. Hope you’ve had fun learning about yet another American tradition. While you amigos look forward to your next adventure, I’m off to polish off the leftovers from my Thanksgiving feast!


Notes:
Amigo = Spanish for friend

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