FIRST THANKSGIVING MEAL

The first Thanksgiving meal was not as it is today. There was neither turkey, bread stuffing, cranberry sauce, potatoes nor pumpkin pie.

Thanksgiving dinner has evolved!

The date of the event questionable. By a year. Some say 1621, the first year the Pilgrims were on Plymouth soil. Others say 1622, one year later.

The Pilgrims and Wampanoag Indians joined together for the party. Not one meal. Actually, a three day feast.

Turkeys were plentiful in the area. Not generally eaten by the Pilgrims. A “fowling party” was sent out to capture the birds to be consumed. Birds regularly eaten by the Pilgrims. Ducks, geese and swans.

Bread stuffing. No way. Herbs, onions or nuts added to the bird for extra flavor purposes.

There was meat. The Indians contributed five deer.

Cranberries were plentiful. Still fifty years away from being used for eating purposes. Sauces or relishes with the meal consisted of sugar which remained from the long Mayflower voyage. The sugar in minimal supply, however.

Fifty years later people started boiling cranberries with sugar. The cranberry sauce first being used as an accompaniment to meats.

Mussels part of the meal. Mussels plentiful in the area. Clung to rocks along the sea shore.

No potatoes. Neither white nor sweet.

Potatoes originally from South America. The Spaniards brought them to Spain. Potatoes were still foreign to England at the time the Mayflower left.

No pumpkin pie. Pumpkins plentiful. Butter and wheat flour required for the crust not available. Nor were there any ovens for baking.

It is possible some pumpkins were hollowed out. Then filled with milk, honey and spices. Following which the gourds were roasted whole in hot ashes.

So much for the first Thanksgiving dinner. Habit of course, but I prefer turkey, cranberries, potatoes, and stuffing buried in gravy. Dessert, pumpkin pie.

Thanksgiving, not a day to diet!

More from my blog/Facebook friend Jim Brown who lives on the island of Crete in Greece. Following is a further part of his detailed e-mail response to my inquiry as to why Obama was protested during his recent visit.

Some history required.

The U.S. and Greece were allies during World War II. The Greeks fought shoulder to shoulder with the U.S. in Korea. Greece was a part of NATO.

A military dictatorship took control of Greece in 1967. Unpopular. Remained in power, however. The junta was still in power in November 1973.

Athens Polytechnic is an Athens based university. On November 14, the students went on strike against the military dictatorship. By the next day, November 15, the strike had turned into a revolt.

The students occupied the Polytechnic campus during those days. The demonstrations increased in intensity from the 15th to the 17th.

The military government finally had it. They sent the tanks in on November 17. It was the end of the revolution. Many students died.

The Greeks take the events of those November days seriously. The 17th is a national holiday. There is a memorial stone on the campus. It contains the names of Polytechnic students who fought and were killed during the Greek resistance to Germany during World War II. The monument also contains the names of the students killed on November 17.

A commemoration event takes place each year on campus. The day the students decided to revolt. Two days after the commemoration event, demonstrators march the streets to the United States Embassy.

Why the U.S. Embassy?

Greeks have memories like elephants. They never forget. To this day, the Greeks are upset the U.S. did not support them in the November 1973 uprising. We were allies and friends at the time.

The U.S. and Russia were engaged in the Cold War. The U.S. thought it advantageous to support the military junta against the students. The U.S. felt it was the right move for them re the Cold War.

Once the U.S. broke faith with the Greeks, other reasons developed.

The U.S. was a significant part of NATO. NATO ended the Yugoslavia War in 1999 by bombing Serbia. Serbia was Greece’s orthodox ally.

The U.S. supports the European Union. The Union has been killing Greece with austerity programs. Another reason to be anti-U.S.

The U.S. supports the International Monetary Fund. The Greeks consider the Fund anti-Greece.

The annual parade on November 17 is to pay tribute to the students who died and secondarily, to express Greece’s continued displeasure with the U.S.’s position.

The last President to visit Greece prior to Obama’s visit was Bill Clinton. He formally apologized to the Greeks. He openly admitted the U.S. allowed its interests in prosecuting the Cold War to prevail over its obligation to support democracy.

Now comes Obama’s visit. On November 15. Not the 17th when the parade/demonstration was scheduled. Why waste a parade/demonstration? The event was moved up two days to coincide with Obama’s arrival.

Eight thousand protested. Anarchists and leftists.

The Greeks consider the U.S. a friend. In spite of the reasons given why not. Obama should not have been included in the demonstration. However, Greeks are Greeks. Such is their nature.

Recognize also that those protesting are only a portion of the Greek population.

Again, I must skip a day of Key West history based on a Rotary history. The blog today, though interesting,

already too long. Tomorrow, the Key West Rotary World War II and the immediate years following.

There will be more from Jim Brown, also.

Enjoy your Thanksgiving! Be grateful for whatever you have. Bountiful or limited.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NOSTALGIA

The last 24 hours brought back some yesterdays. Not personal ones. Interesting nevertheless.

The first was Al Gore. Former Vice-President. A world leader in protecting the environment.

Gore was with Hillary Clinton at Miami Dade College. Talking to college students about the environment. He is a recognized expert in the field. He prepared the documentary An Inconvenient Truth. A global warming warning. For which Gore received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007.

He is older. We all are.  I have not seen him in 10-15 years. Put on a lot of weight. So have I.

Gore also talked about voting. Every vote counts was his pitch. Who better than he should know! He was defeated for President by George W. Bush. The chad election. Gore lost Florida by 500 plus votes. He won the overall national vote by 500,000 plus votes.

This morning, I read in the Key West Citizen of the coming Key West Film Festival. Scheduled this year for November 16-20.

Burt Reynolds will be in Key West for the Festival.  He is receiving a Career Achievement Award.

Reynolds is now 82. Looks good. One of his big hits was Smokey & the Bandit. A documentary of the behind the scenes goings on will be shown at the Festival.

Reynolds gave me/us pleasure. Each of his roles genuine.

Finally, Nikita Khrushchev. Leader of the Soviet Union. At a time when the Soviet Union was unquestionably the enemy of the United States.

It was the fall of 1960. I was waiting for my bar exam results. Khrushchev was at the United Nations in New York. During someone’s talk, Khrushchev disagreed. He stood up and took off one of his shoes. He pounded the table with his shoe.

Khrushchev was a pig. Looked like and acted like one. A reporter at the time described him as a “hotheaded buffoon.”

Khrushchev and Trump have many similarities.

When you get to my age, you feel you have lived history. Actually, you have lived through historical moments. The memorable ones vivid in your mind.

Spent yesterday prepping for my blog talk radio show last night. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou.

Two items I hit on involved the election and opium. Not related.

A book came out monday. A Filthy Risk, etc. The story of Jeffrey Epstein. A portion of the book his relationship with Bill Clinton. Epstein was convicted in 2008 of soliciting a child for prostitution. He did 13 months.

The book has a first printing of 500,000 copies. Expected to be a big seller. Before this week is out, you should begin hearing its contents. Knowing how Trump plays, the Clinton contents could become a campaign bomb.

Two years ago, I wrote a lengthy KONK Life column on Afghanistan and opium. Opium poppies are used to make heroin.

Afghanistan supplies 90 percent of heroin world wide. The biggest supplier to the streets of America. Heroin presently being the U.S.’s major drug problem.

Opium growing in significant amounts began when the U.S. went to war in Afghanistan in 2001. We are still there in some form. The question I raised in the KONK column and again last night is why none of the opium poppy fields were destroyed during the terrible Afghanistan conflict. Production grew, the war lords owning the fields got richer, and the peasants working the poppy fields neither injured nor killed.

Strange.

I got back into Afghanistan and opium because of a recent study that indicated 30,000 babies in the United States were born last year addicted to some opiate. Generally, heroin or crack.

Because the mom was a junkie, babies are born drug dependent. It takes several days for the babies to complete withdrawal. The babies cry non stop from the pain. Yes, even young ones can hurt.

Which brought me back to Afghanistan. Why have we permitted the opium to grow? The response that we have done everything we can is bullshit.

Something stinks here.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

DINNER WITH FRIENDS

Dinner last night with friends. Karen and Dan Visnic. Karen a Pittsburg Shaklee distributor.

We met through this blog. Karen and Dan are loyal readers. Have been for years. Also frequent visitors to Key West. Three to four times a year. Renting a home on Olivia for the month of June.

We met about a year ago. Lunched at Salute’s where we dined last night. They were in Key West during Fantasy Fest. Their daughter and son in law joined them.

I am ashamed to admit, I had never read anything by John D. MacDonald. Their daughter when she returned home shipped me MacDonald’s The Deep Blue Good-By.

Karen and Dan return for another visit in July. I look forward to seeing them again.

Yesterday began with a late morning session on the anti-gravity treadmill. I swear by this machine. Whereas I recently lost 35 pounds, my gut remained. The treadmill is removing or redistributing my belly. Thrilling!

Then to Lee Nails and Tammy for a manicure. Tammy the best! Her keen sense of humor frequently peeked out yesterday.

It was lunch time. The Cuban Coffee Queen. It is becoming a habit. Parking is easy. I love Cuban pressed bread and coffee. The setting perfect.

This morning’s Key West Citizen carried an interesting front page article. Key West hotels are doing terrific. Occupancy up. Hotel rates have increased 55 percent over the past six years.

Key West is an expensive place. Whether a resident or tourist. The major hotels have been taken over by the big corporations in the last five years. My fear is the ever increasing cost of a hotel stay is going to hurt the chicken that lays the golden egg. Gluttony a terrible thing.

I write frequently about turtles. We are crazy for anything having to do with the water.  The keys fortunate to have a turtle hospital in Marathon.

Two Marathon Turtle Hospital staff recently visited Cuba and met with a primary gamekeeper of turtles there.

The Marathon team brought simple medical tools with them. Medical equipment such as microscopes and a box of slides. Simple is not available in Cuba. Basics of any kind not available.

The trip impresses me. Another step in reuniting the bond between the U.S. and Cuba. These little things move ahead more swiftly than government interaction. It appears it is going to take a long time for the U.S. to become friends with Cuba again. People to people appears more effective.

I am unhappy with the Trans Pacific Pact vote yesterday. A victory for Obama and the Republican Congress. History repeats itself. Rarely do nations learn. Ten years from now the bad will be obvious, the damage already done to the U.S.

Clinton had his NAFTA. Cost the U.S. millions of jobs. Jobs alone are not at stake this time. Foreign control of American businesses is. Obama way off base on this one.

I woke this morning to a gray Key West. Even gray, the vista beautiful to behold. The gray is now lifting and the sun coming out.

I always have had a problem re the spelling of gray. Gray or grey? I looked it up this morning. Both spellings correct. Merely different spellings of the same word. Gray commonly used in the U.S. Grey in England. Take your pick!

Enjoy your day!