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My Senegalese-style American Thanksgiving

Last Thursday night, our entire program spent the evening at Serigne’s house (our Senegalese director) to celebrate American thanksgiving. Of course, me, not being American, had very little need to celebrate this holiday, but it was still fun to pig out and spend the evening with everyone from the group.
We ate chicken instead of turkey, both because turkey is hard to find here and because Serigne isn’t a big fan (it’s not high quality meat, he says). But, other than that, the meal felt Thanksgiving-ish. We ate stuffing and mashed potatoes (yum!!) as well as salad and a few other choice vegetables. The side dish selection was nothing compared to the feast my dad cooks (Wow, i appreciate your cooking) but it was still much better than what I’ve been offered at home lately (that’s a whole other story). We also got to drink a bunch of different Senegalese juices, like ditax, booy, and bisap. They are so good, orange juice might feel a little dull…
After dinner, Catherine, our other director, wanted to go around so that everyone could say something they were thankful for. It got kind of mushy, which was a little bit of a forshadow as to what our farewell dinner, in about 2 weeks, is going to be like… Yikes, don’t even want to think about that.
The Senegalese aspects of the evening
– we ate dinner on the roof of Serigne’s house, meaning it was warm enough to eat outside. This was kind of weird, since every Thanksgiving I can remember has been cold and has essentially marked the beginning of the winter season.
– after dinner, myself and a few others started a drum circle using plates and pastic bowls. It was actually pretty successful, and we got people dancing!!
All in all it was a fun evening. It was kind of nice to hang out with the American students, which I don’t do much of. They are a pretty nice group, and we all mesh well.