I grew up on a farm and while I haven’t lived on a farm for more than fifty five years, I can’t help but follow what is going on with the lives of those who are still engaged in agricultural work here in the Finger Lakes. I have a keen eye for following what is being planted and what is being harvested in the fields in the Finger Lakes and from my personal experience, I know that there is no greater feeling of satisfaction than knowing that your silo is full of grass or chopped corn and that your barn is full of hay for the animals to eat over the winter time.
Most of the corn and soy beans have now been harvested and the fields are being put to rest. Over and over in my mind, I hear the hymn that we would sing: “Come Ye Thankful People Come”. Thanksgiving was one of the few days that my father would ever take off from working on his farm. We would enjoy the traditional Thanksgiving feast with my Uncle, Aunt, and my cousin Lee, and then after dinner while the women washed up the dishes, we would go hunting for rabbits.
There seems to be a ground swell of concern that perhaps we aren’t observing Thanksgiving Day as it should be observed and that we are turning it into just another shopping day without spending time with our families. And I think that folks are just now realizing what they have been missing! I do feel sorry for those who can’t be with their families this Thanksgiving or have to work in our crazy world of seven days per week of retail sales. But I have to remind myself that my father and mother took very little time off for themselves, but rather worked on Thanksgiving Day taking care of the chickens, the cows, and the dog and the cats, just like any other day of the year. However, they did have just enough time to sit down around the big old kitchen table and share the fruits of their labors with family and friends.
Jeanette and I will be traveling to Pennsylvania to share Thanksgiving Day with Jeanette’s daughter Susan, and her son Robert and his family. It will be a special year for us. We do hope that you will find just enough time in your busy lives to celebrate Thanksgiving with family and friends. And while most of you don’t have a silo or a barn to worry about, we do hope that your refrigerator is filled to overflowing for Thanksgiving.