Festive Nostalgia

If you’d ever had Thanksgiving dinner with my grandpa, you would have been treated the following story he learned when he was in Egypt during WWII:

Once upon a time, a rich man’s cook was preparing a fine turkey feast for his master and his friends. Just as the turkey was ready, the cook’s long lost brother showed up at the kitchen door, starving and begging for food. Unable to turn his brother away hungry, the cook tore a leg off one of the cooked turkeys and gave it to his brother.

When the cook brought the turkey to his master, the master asked angrily why the turkey only had one leg. The cook  looked confused and asked his master how such a wise man could be unaware that all the turkeys in this country had only one leg.

The master thought this quite the novelty and was excited to present the one legged foul to his friends. But when the master told his friends how all the country’s turkeys had only one leg, they laughed him to scorn.

At that, he got all up in a tizzy, that is to say, a murderous rage, and stormed the kitchen to demand an explanation from the cook. The cook acted puzzled and promised to prove to the master that all the turkeys in his flock had only one leg.

A wild turkey standing around on one leg like a flamingo. Graceful, right?

So, the next day, the cook took the master to his flock of turkeys and pointed at them all in the field, standing on one leg. The master had had enough of the cook’s antics. He waved his arms at the birds and shouted, “Shoo! Shoo!” and the birds were all startled and put down their other leg.

“See!” The master cried. “You can’t trick me so easily! As soon as they’re startled, they put down their other leg!”

The cook still seemed confused and asked his master, “Or course they do! But why didn’t you do that with the bird on the table?”

And, to close, a photo of my grandpa and me with his fiber optic Christmas tree. I set it up one day when we were about to head out some place. I said we may want to turn it off before leaving, but he wanted to keep the “Spirit of Christmas” going in his house. So we left it on.


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