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November 20, 2007

Talking Turkey

Posted by admin

Soooo of course I have a funny turkey story, and it's one some of you readers may remember. A few years ago I bought a frozen turkey and following my husband's instructions I put it in the fridge to defrost. After all, he is an engineer while I am the writer; I figured he knew such things. Soooo it's late the night before Thanksgiving and I am IMing with a friend and she says, well, at least my turkey is defrosted. I get thinking about MY turkey.

I go down to the extra fridge and give it a poke and it feels hard and cold and not schmushy like I am used to. I haul it out of the fridge thinking maybe I was grabbing it at the wrong angle and I hug it and it feels STIFF, not dead stiff which I know it is, but rock hard cold stiff. I know I have a problem.

I run back up to my office, IM Ann again and ask for help. Why call the Butterball hotline, when I can IM? She tells me to soak it in water...cold water...sooooo I lug the turkey into the kitchen...close the drain, fill the sink with water, yank off the plastic wrapper and dump the turkey in. Whew, that crisis averted.

I crawl into bed all ready to get my Night Before Thanksgiving Sleep. Sooooo just as I am falling asleep something tells me...CHECK on the turkey. I race downstairs. It's still in the sink but there is NO water in the sink. It drained out.

What to do?

I race up to my bathroom with cleaning supplies in hand. I wash the bathtub; rinse the bathtub. I fill the tub with water and then I sit there for 15 minutes to test to be sure it's holding. Then I throw a POT over the drain in case it starts to move at all. The water holds. I race down to the kitchen with a big bath towel, wrap the turkey, haul it up the stairs and dump it into the bathtub. Then I close the curtain. I have NO idea why I do the latter, but I do.

I crash into my bed confident that the turkey is defrosting in peace. First thing the following day I pull back the curtain and check on the turkey; it's still soaking. I walk bleary eyed into the kitchen where my husband is eating breakfast and I tell him the story. He looks at me with a look that I have come to know well, the one that says, "You have GOT to be kidding." The boys come in and I tell them and they race to the bathtub to see the turkey and they cannot stop laughing. I get another towel lest the first have like salmonella or something and carry the turkey downstairs, wash it, since the submersion all night was not enough of a bath. Once it's properly dressed I place it in the oven and then I SCRUB the tub.

It was a great turkey that year, but it was an even better story. I picture the boys telling it for many years. I think stories like this make the holiday. For the record, this memory inspired me to race down to check this year's turkey to be sure it was a fresh one with no need of defrosting. It is!

While my husband was hunting and gathering the turkey in the produce aisle on Sunday I was in the produce area doing my imitation of a pilgrim reaping the harvest. At one point I had my hand on some turnips and I was thinking...hmmm...all I have to do is pick the ones I like best...the pilgrim woman had to GROW these...or maybe the pilgrim man did that since she was churning butter. Whatever, what we did was easier.

This year we are having twelve for Thanksgiving. My parents are joining us as well as a half dozen of our neighbors. They each are bringing something, which ensures that this will be very festive. I told them it will be like the Pilgrim times with everyone bringing something to the table. I am sure that many memories will be made.

I have many cookbooks flagged and ready to be used tomorrow and Thursday. Most of the pages have stains from previous cooking ventures (yes, I know they sell acrylic covers that will prevent this), but somehow they just feel right looking like this. The pages tell a story. By the way this seems right as I am the same girl who listens to some favorites songs recalling the pops and cracks that came with the vinyl versions. Even when they play on CD, I hear the skips.

Here's to old holiday stories...and new memories made!