Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thanksgiving Eve, altered state

Normally, being up at 11pm doesn't mean much to me. In my apartment at University Town, I'm by myself, and I've got two high-lumen torchiere lamps in a small living room which makes the place as bright as daylight (I have a theory that a reason I have trouble sleeping at night is that the lights are too bright.)

Here in Metro, though, there are two average lamps in an average living room. The husband is sleeping in the next room, and and everything feels quiet and sleepy and just very NIGHT-like. I'm feeling a little sad, a little lonely, a little regretful, a little homesick.

I've had a wonderful few days here. I don't want to leave. But Thanksgiving is tomorrow, and I wish it weren't. I wish Thanksgiving was another week away. Oh, I look forward to the actual getting together and all that. It's just that to me, Thanksgiving marks the end of vacation. I don't want to go back.

It's always this way, of course. While I'm in University Town, I'm happy to be in University Town, happy to have my own place, and I think that perhaps after I graduate I'll wander some more. Who needs to live together, right? The world is so big--why live in a single place, why settle down? I'm happy to travel back to Metro, as I step on the plane out of University Town...but it's a happiness that is no different from going on any vacation. It's only once I land in Metro that I enter a reality shift, an altered state: Why did I ever leave? And, no, I don't want to go away again. I no longer know what is real: Of course things are wonderful--You're on vacation, you dolt, sans souci! It's not real! It's an illusion, a slice of only some of the happy moments in life. Yet it FEELS real. The happiness and the sadness, both.

So I'm awake, typing, in strange place when 11pm feels like night.

I'm a bit intimidated by Thanksgiving tomorrow. Oh, the mother-in-law has the turkey covered. Nothing will be ruined. But we agreed that I would try a mix of a turkey kiev/turkey wellington. There is filleted turkey breast waiting for me in her refrigerator. The plan--my plan--is to take a mallet to the things until they're about 1/4" thick, layer with a cranberry walnut stuffing, and roll it and sear it, and encase it in phyllo dough and bake it. Because honestly...I've had roast turkey for Thanksgiving every year for YEARS. I'm no fan of leftovers, either. There has to be a better way! There has to be a better way! There has to be a better way!

The issue is, I'm no professional cook. This turkey rollup/wellington is something I've dreamed up (though there are recipes for turkey wellington out there, they require bacon, and they have the turkey breast whole, not flattened). Add to this the fact that I get to make it while *all* the Thanksgiving stuff is going on--the cooking of sides, and gravies, and desserts--and I've no idea how I'm going to pull it off. The way I figure it, it'll be ready by supper time. On the plus side, unreasonable cooking tasks have never put me off before.

I'll let you know how it goes.

My contributions for Thanksgiving:
White wine turkey gravy
Glazed Dijon carrots
Apple cranberry walnut stuffing
For reference: Turkey kiev
For reference: Turkey wellington

Hope everyone has a wonderful holiday!