What does one do when visiting their university student son? Well, in my case ,since I am a long way from home and away from anywhere or anyone familiar besides him I Cook, Create and Walk.
Yesterday was Thanksgiving for us. A week late but the day we chose to celebrate because we were able to be together all day without going to the rink or the university. My son and I started in the morining by making ‘the pies.’ That meant I made the pastry and then he helped me mix the ingredients for the filling. Once the pies were in the oven it was vegetable peeling time for him and stuffing making for me. We worked together in the small kitchen quite nicely and I enjoyed the familiar banter that we fall back into when we are together.
With the potatoes and yams peeled, the stuffing mixed up and the squash cut and seeded it was onto the business of getting the stuffing into the turkey. It was most amusing teaching my son how to stuff a turkey. He was fixated on figuring out which end was the head and which was, well, you know….. the other end. We disagreed on which was which and finally to prove his point he took the wings and spread them to show me how the turkey would fly and which end was which. Turns out I roast the turkey on its back which I hadn’t really thought about much so he was in fact correct about the ends. Very amusing exercise in turkey anatomy.
With the pies out, the turkey in and the veggies prepped we had time to head out on a ‘find some furniture and paint for the room’ expedition. This was a continuation of the previous day and we pretty much struck out again. We had some options in mind if nothing else worked out but nothing ideal. We did manage to get the paint and supplies so we were ready to at least get the room painted. By ‘the room’ I mean his bedroom in the apartment he is sharing with two other students At the moment it consists of a matress and boxspring on the floor and his belongings scattered willy nilly on the floor and in the closet.
Upon our return from the unsuccesful expedition we began cooking the vegetables and by 6:30pm were enjoying a glass of wine, some Miles Davis music and I was knitting an alpaca toque for him At 7:00pm my son’s roommates joined us and we sat down to our Thanksgiving Dinner. It was a gathering of the nations so to speak, as one of the boys was from St. Louis, USA and the other was from Sweden and us being from Canada. We shared our stories of traditions and food but mostly just relaxed in the calm and comfort which the boys are sorely missing. As a student and NCAA Div. 1 Hockey player, relaxation and the comforts of home are something longed for often and experienced infrequently. The evening gave us all an opportunity to reflect and truly be thankful for our respective, supportive families and the comfort of familiarity
With the cooking out of the way, I got up this morning and was able to finish the toque I started yesterday. My son and I had a coffee and some breakfast and then it was off to deliver him to his classes at the university.
I returned home, strapped on my runners and warm vest and headed out to explore the area on foot. I spent almost two hours walking the neighborhoods and looking at the old houses as well as perusing the shops in town. A chilly northwind was blowing and I overheard the locals chatting about the threat of snow tonight. Geesh, we are not ready for that.
I explored some of the old shops and of course had to stop by my favorite locavore haunt, the food co-op. It is so nice to see that there is a local food movement and that not all Yuppers want to shop at Walmart for their groceries. A pet peeve of mine that I will elaborate on another time. I also discovered a yarn shop, a library, (something I always look for in a new town) in addition to some very unique art galleries and shops. Add to that a very cool iron ore dock that is unfamiliar for me and a local brew pub rightly named, The Ore Dock Brew Pub. I hope to try it out one while I am here.
We completed our mission after my son’s classes and hit up a store that we thought was a big box building suppy store. It turns out it was but it also had some “assemble yourself” furniture and so after the painting is complete we will arm ourselves with a screwdriver and tackle the; some assembly required project.; I suspect we will have to do it in sessions and perhaps not in the same room as we have both been known to have a rather short fuse when it comes to figuring out these things. Remember my method of “just let me try it?” My son subscribes to the same method so it could get interesting. We will have to throw in a few Red Green lines and keep it light. Wish me luck.
Cook, Thanksgiving dinner. Create, a knitted alpaca toque and felted acorns for table decor. Walk, exploring a new town and landscape.