So, technically, this was not the first Thanksgiving away from home for me. That honor belongs to the dinner in Bath in 2005 which was great except, I mean, what do the English know about Thanksgiving? The stuffing came out in little balls. They tried and I was grateful. But my first Thanksgiving that I was in control of was going to go perfectly.
Oh come now. I'm not that naive. It wouldn't be Thanksgiving if there were not scares and hiccups and moments when you think the whole thing might blow up in your face. It started out early, before the parade even came on, one of my roommates started the turkey. We couldn't find the packet of giblets but we carried on, thinking perhaps they'd forgotten them. Seanna put all sorts of stuff in the bird, rubbed it down with miracle whip and successfully had it into the oven before 9 AM. Ahead of schedule. I liked this. However, the parade never started. Apparently, Detroit's Thanksgiving Parade is more important than the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in Michigan. I was confused and found some sort of coverage on CBS. My parents later helped me figure out the problem and I flipped out. One tradition shot to dust. Luckily, my paper arrived on time and I plotted out my attack for the next morning. Yes, I am one of those nutters who leaves the house at the crack of dawn on Black Friday.
Anyhoo, we're swimming along just fine and then Julie appears. Our turkey is probably done. Three hours before planned. Me, the person who checks, double checks and triple checks anything to do with cooking hadn't looked up cooking times again after we decided to cook the turkey unstuffed...House thrown into frenzy, people running around, stuffing being thrown into oven, potatoes boiling. In the grand scheme of things, of course it worked out. In fact, the turkey ended up only being done an hour earlier than planned (our oven takes forever to do anything).
So, Thanksgiving was delightful in the end. We ate ourselves into food comas, recovered to have pumpkin pie and whipped cream and generally enjoyed a day with friends and less guilt for not working on papers.
And in the end, we found our packet of giblets. The take home message of the day? A turkey has two holes. Check both before cooking.