You may (or may not) recall that DT and I began our married life in The Philippines. He was suddenly transferred to Manila when we were about 12 and we rushed to get married so I could get a visa as it seems a 97% Catholic country was not too keen on granting resident visa’s to “girlfriends” in 1980. (I understand things have changed quite a bit in the last thirty years.) Not the most romantic reason to marry, but it has worked out for us.

Forgive me if you have seen this:

This photo was taken in July 1980 – the night before we were married in Exeter, New Hampshire. We had been living in New Hampshire only nine months. We were supposed to be here for about two years, but things were moving very quickly in DT’s company and they needed him overseas NOW.

Like yesterday.

Twenty minutes later, we were living in a condo in Manila.

Flash-forward to November 1980. Why am I posting this photo on the internet? Oh, that’s right, because I am young, thin-ish, happy (possibly drunk?), newly-wed and living in The Philippines! We were celebrating Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving with a chicken, because there wasn’t a turkey in the entire country of The Philippines in 1980. I roasted that chicken in a propane oven (see, I was always RVing) that was barely tall enough to hold the scrawny carcass. Celebrating with a $30 pumpkin pie, with marzipan pumpkins, that I purchased (after getting a bank loan) from the Mandarin Oriental Hotel bake shop. (Seriously, it was so expensive, I still remember the price to this day, 30 years later.) I can’t recall why we posed with this vast array of beer bottles. (DT’s co-worker, Al, was obviously involved in this photo.) There was definitely not a bottle of wine to be had in Manila in 1980’s… or none we could even imagine to afford.

If a pumpkin pie cost $30 dollars, imagine the price of a bottle of Annie Green Springs?

NOTE: We still have that lovely cabinet behind us in the photo. It was made by Spanish carpenters in The Philippines over 200 years ago! One of our best purchases – we use this “Spanish Kitchen Cabinet” daily (in our master bathroom to hold towels). Hey, it needs a lot of humidity.

Flash-forward two years. Looks like DT and I have a few changes in our life! That little munchkin is 15 months old. My Mom (in red) has flown over to Manila to visit us. (I am a liar. She flew over to Manila to visit Lisa.) This is our third Thanksgiving in Manila. We invited DT’s co-worker (Al has been replaced by Michael, in blue) to join us. (DT is in yellow… so I must be taking the photo.) Our housekeeper/yaya (Filipino for nanny), Sining, is seated at the table. This is the first and only time we could get her to eat dinner with us. Sining preferred to dine in the kitchen. We tried to explain Thanksgiving to Sining, but she was not enjoying the celebration.

I miss her.

No $30 pumpkin pie this year, as my Mom brought a can of pumpkin and a can of cranberry sauce from the States. Our “turkey” was a duck, found hanging from a Chinese restaurant window, already roasted, ready to eat… seriously.

We were in Southeast Asia. It’s how we rolled.

Looks to me that Mom is drinking a glass of wine. Did she bring it from Oregon? She doesn’t look too happy? Maybe the wine is a bit sour? Looks as if I am about to be grounded.

Where the hell did I get a wine glass?

David and I wish you and yours a wonderful Thanksgiving – no matter where you are celebrating or how you are celebrating! Much love, from our RV to yours!

Until my next update, I remain, your thankful correspondent.

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