Rediscovering Thanksgiving

Exactly twenty five years ago this month I embarked on an adventure of my lifetime. I decided to suspend my studies at the Jagiellonian University in Krakow and visit the United States for the first time. It has been a great experience so far and I’m happy to say that a quarter of a century later my adventure continues.

It just so happened that I arrived at JFK only a couple of days before Thanksgiving of 1981 having absolutely no idea what the big turkey cookout was all about. If you remember, Thanksgiving is not celebrated in Europe…

Over the years I managed to acquire some knowledge about the holiday and enjoyed all festivities of Thanksgiving in its full splendor. And just about now, as I begun to take this holiday for granted, I was fortunate to come across a great book “Mayflower: A Story of Courage, Community, and War” by Nathaniel Philbrick.

Reading this book allowed me to rediscover the accounts of the Plymouth colony and the early American history all over again. William Bradford and his companions come to life. This book, like a good suspense novel took me through hardships and victories of the early settlers. At the end it reinforced my appreciation for the pioneering spirit and the skill of survival of early inhabitants of this great country.

I’m sure that this year’s Thanksgiving will be even more meaningful to me and I hope the same for you.

Alicja Feitzinger, Assistant Director

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