Reflections of Thanksgivings Past...

Text Box: Welcome to Thanksgiving 2013

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Since 1863, Thanksgiving has been observed annually in the United States [1]


Pilgrim { page 2}

We have reverted to the 50’s in this country where life with all of its modern conveniences and instant communication from anywhere anytime has for the most part slowed down. Our economy is growing at one or two percent annually and although some pundits chidingly refer to it as the new normal we are grateful for any growth at all.


Mr. Bernanke a student of the great depression has continued to pump massive amounts of liquidity into the financial system and although some discount his efforts; others like President Obama owe their political lives for retaining the luxury of kicking the can down the road for so long without the political bloodbath that would have ensued from implementing serious reforms to entitlements, other spending and taxes without the accommodating influences of Uncle Ben. 


For us though we are grateful for our lives one day at a time especially on this Thanksgiving Eve as we anticipate a house full of people tomorrow. I can smell the aroma of one turkey slow cooking on the smoker outside and the other will be placed on an oven rack at a low temperature prior to us retiring for the evening. Our puppies and kittens are well fed and healthy as are we. Recently we had to suspend our gym membership and didn’t replace the microwave or the stereo when they both went on the fritz. This evening I have a total of $9.25 in my checking account after providing all the necessary ingredients, stock, fruits and deserts to make this our best Thanksgiving ever.


Living close to zero has allowed me to continue a spiritual journey I embraced when I was in the third grade. My wife and I take time to talk each day and on occasion when she reverts to fear we prepare a gratitude list including at the very top our relationship with Almighty God through his son and our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.


 We are both thankful for our health and our beautiful apartment to which we added our own upgrades including space saving overhead shelving, accented night lighting and many plants. Our bills are paid by cash, check or debit only and always prepaid or on time and our guests list includes over seventeen persons who will celebrate with us this Thanksgiving when we knew not a soul upon arriving in El Paso. We belong to a Catholic faith community whose church was built and paid for fifty years ago and the choir consists manly of one extended family of three generations whose daughters-granddaughters walk from their home to ours on Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter to receive artistic themed painted jars of candy. We are always the last ones ushered outside after celebrating Mass by a security guard who walks with a cane, is our friend, and we wait with him while he secures each door of our country church.


Life is good for us with no out of pocket maintenance while professional landscapers mow the lawn and leaf blow our stairwell and balcony for the price of a cold coke. We have a community fitness center and swimming pool nestled underneath a canopy of hundred year old trees with birds chirping day and night and gliding only inches above the hot asphalt parking lot on their way from one tree to another and all of this only yards from our front door and circle drive looping around a tiny park accented with a sitting bench, large ash tree with sparrows and blackbirds routinely sitting on the very tip top of the highest bough swaying in the breeze as if wind surfing and occasionally fluttering their wings to stabilize and balance themselves while surveying for insects hiding in the rose bushes below.


We work harder for less now than ever before in either of our lives but we appreciate life more from sun up to sun down and deep into the night too! 


Make no mistake about it America has enormous economic and political consequences just ahead and in order to right the ship we may experience an even deeper recession than the one we have just endured. However we settle our differences at the ballot box and not in the streets with violent clashes as we witness in other countries not as resilient or blessed with the vast array of resources, watchmen,  soldiers of the night and talent all here in America.


Where we live people are almost always polite and courteous.  We look out for our neighbors and search for stray pets together.


We realize that life is about so much more than our address, reputation and strata. We are happy because we want what we have and not because we have what we want. We prefer to seek a state of grace and ponder often why when I was in early recovery that some in the room  remained deeply tormented and unable to grasp the spirituality required to attain lasting sobriety. How many times have we heard: To those who believe no explanation is necessary and to those who don’t believe no explanation is possible.


For the gift of faith we are affixed for life. We like the Pilgrims of old crossed over the spiritual high seas of life and were reborn on the other side.


2. Eric Clapton-Pilgrim 1998.3


[1] Thanksgiving



   Depression is Here -- It's Just Invisible  By Al Lewis Published August 01, 2012  

           Dow Jones Newswires


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