it is the day after thanksgiving and the house is full of sleep breathing, all in different depths and durations, all unmistakenly identifiable. we are at diana’s house in tuscon, arizona. windchimes rattle on the morning wind and the desert trees sway dryly.
it took us four hours just to get out of los angeles and ten hours total to arrive in tucson. we parked the car at 2am and went to knock on diana’s door. through the opening in her horizontal blinds, i could see her asleep on the papsan curled into my neice, alexis with the glow of the tv on their faces. i thought of taking a photo but was too excited to see them. a sleepy diana opened the door and fell into my hug, alexis’ conscienceness surfaced for a moment, then lapsed and i steam-rolled adrienne in bed. she played dead but i knew i got her…
we slept on her roommate’s futon for a few hours and then adrienne and i watched the thanksgiving day parade together under a fleece blanket with multi-colored stars while everyone slept on.
we went to pick up mom and renee at a nearby hotel and that’s it, we were all together, all the sisters, neice and mom. dad was missed but we will get to play with him in a few weeks in mexico!
the turkey had been in the oven since 6am. tsafi, who was experiencing his first thanksgiving, awoke to this cooking turkey smell and adorably asked me if it was pancakes. LOL!! he’d never seen a full turkey baking like that and was systematically amazed throughout the day. mom took over the kitchen preparing side dishes while the rest of us moved living room furniture and strategized how 15 people would fit in that house. two rickety tables were unfolded and a thin paper dining tablecloth was opened over them. alexis laid out plates with butterflies on them and the cutlery.
soon, everyone arrived, mostly new acquaintances. it was diana’s roommate, seren, her family, her boyfriend who almost died a few days ago on a motorcycle without a helmet and was self-conscience about the stitches on his face and swollen parts. seren was also on the motorcycle and the accident’s effect was etched onto their faces. her boyfriend’s family also came. guests arrived to a candle-lit room with various home-made offerings of their own. seren’s mom is the elderly witty woman who sat next to me coughing into a napkin, recovering from bronchitis. she made all sorts of food and no one felt anything less than stuffed like a turkey before the day’s end.
the kids sat on the porch smoking and sitting still while the adults sat around the table talking. when everyone left, we all chipped in to help clean up. we collapsed to watch a film, chicago, after we played a vicious game of scrabble. mom and diana’s boyfriend, bryce, were the stronger players. they were scary contenders, both very serious and calculating.