By Arthur Moore
Back in the fifties we lived on Hinckley Street. Tiny apartment. Kinda normal back then as many people lived in tiny places with lots of children. Actually one bedroom but we made do with three boys in a tiny bedroom thanks to my dad making bunk beds. My parents had what would be the dining room. The place was heated from a kitchen stove that had a kerosene heater in it. And a kerosene heater in the living room.
I remember this one for some reason. My grandparents were coming probably. So my parents bedroom got cleared out for the day. I don’t remember what the table was. I know we had snacks like cream cheese and dates on celery. Mixed nuts we had to crack open. We were just mostly playing in the living room listening to the radio stories.
Then the seven of us had to fit in this tiny dining room. My youngest brother was in a high chair. My grandfather carved the turkey and gave Larry the turkey leg. Then Larry hit him over the head with it. Great start. The meal was simple. Turkey, sweet potatoes, butternut squash and turkey. I still set my table the same way as we did then. Easy, no short order cooking. Less cooking and work so everyone had time to be with each other.
I remember the cider being Bessie in a glass jar. No clue why I remember that. Think we just had a squash pie. I know my mom loved squash pie and I made sure she always had one later on in life. She was not much about making pie crust but we didn’t care.
Later on I got good at the crust and made the pies every year for everyone. Made lots of apple and squash pies and the fake mince meat ones. At one point I got up to about 30 pies. One year I forgot to put sugar in the squash pie for some reason and after that my mother would make a sign for my kitchen to make sure I didn’t forget the sugar.
This year I will still make the same. It will easier as I will be making less which my body will appreciate. For over 70 years I have kept it the same. Short menu and three kinds of pies.
This Thanksgiving I will have many people in spirit. And relive these things back to our Hinckley Street days that I remember so well. They were all good memories. I guess whatever was going on around us we could forget for one day. Regardless of how this all got started I think it has become a nice family day. One many of us do not do enough of.
Regardless of your celebration of it and menu I hope somehow we can make a great day of it. And if a reconciliation of a past conflict can be resolved so much the better. I am going to continue my best to make it a meaningful day.