Although cultures all over the world celebrate giving thanks around harvest time, Thanksgiving is a deeply personal holiday for many Americans, and as expats we all have different ways of celebrating while abroad.
For me personally, technology has made keeping in touch with family effortless. In fact, for the past few years now, I Skype with my family during Thanksgiving dinner! My mom sets up her computer on a side table where I can see the whole family, and although I can’t enjoy the stuffing and cranberry sauce, I can participate in the conversation and “be there” in a sense. Although it feels strange to be thankful for technology, as an expat it provides a much-appreciated bridge between “my world” and my family’s.
A sample of the myriad other things I’m thankful for:
- About a month ago my grandfather turned 100! Almost all my family was able to be there and it was a joy to spend his birthday together.
- My sister Nina just gave birth to a little girl. I’m thankful that mom, dad, and baby are healthy and happy.
- I’m currently visiting my second “home” – Madrid – for an extended weekend. I’m incredibly lucky, and thankful, to have multiple homes with multiple support systems.
I may not be able to spend Thanksgiving with my family in person, but I’m grateful to have close friends and “adoptive families” always within reach.
What are you thankful for? How do you celebrate holidays abroad?
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