Last Thursday was Thanksgiving and, as is the custom, I received messages and calls from friends in the old country wishing me a happy turkey day.

One of those calls came from a longtime friend of mine who could never figure out exactly why we decided to make Mexico our full time home. I would continually run down the long list of reasons: lower cost of living, great healthcare, improved quality of life…etc., etc.

He always seems skeptical when I say that there isn’t a single “thing” that I miss from the States.

Just to be clear, I am talking about “things” and not “people”. The patented, politically correct response to any question about what you miss from your home country should contain that disclaimer: “Other than family and friends, I don’t miss anything.”

To be honest, I haven’t missed many people because everyone keeps visiting us here in Mexico. In fact, we get so many visitors that we had to start tracking them on a calendar so we don’t double-book.

Okay, I got off on a tangent there — back to the story about my friend.

The Story

My friend always seems determined to find something that I miss from the U.S. and he thought he found it in Thanksgiving. Here is a little excerpt from our conversation on Thursday:

“Hey, I know they don’t have Thanksgiving in Mexico,” my friend said. “So I’m just calling to remind you that today is Thanksgiving here in the U.S.”

“Thanks for keeping me updated,” I replied.

“Yep, we’re having a big get-together today. We’ll be having turkey, ham, sweet potato casserole, cranberry sauce — the works!” he bragged.

“Sounds delicious.”

“I guess you miss food like this living down there. So tell me, what do you have planned? Heading to the beach to eat tacos or something?”

“No, we’re having a big Thanksgiving get-together today, ” I answered. “We’ll be having turkey, ham, sweet potato casserole, cranberry sauce — the works!”

He was clearly surprised to hear this. “What? I thought they don’t celebrate Thanksgiving down there.”

“We live in area full of American tourists and expats, so it really isn’t much different than living in the States.”

“And, you can get the same food?” he asked.

“Of course. As a matter of fact, several local restaurants even offer a special Thanksgiving menu with all the fixings.”

“Okay, fine.” He sounded bit annoyed by this point. “I thought I had finally identified something that you missed from here.”

“Well…I miss my family and friends,” I said.

“Yeah, yeah — I know the speech. Okay, have a great Thanksgiving.”

Let’s Wrap This Up

Spending Thanksgiving south of the border has a few advantages: 1) every restaurant is open, 2) there are no lines at the grocery store, and 3) you can eat your turkey on a warm Mexican beach while sipping a cold Mexican beer.

That last one is truly something to be thankful for.

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