03 December 2013

Thanksgiving in the desert

In the most fundamental ways, the way Team P celebrated Thanksgiving was fairly traditional. There was tons of food...

There was fancy china...

There were proclamations of gratitude...

And of course, there was football.

As if Mr. P needed a reminder that there was a Packers game on Thanksgiving.

But wait a sec. Did you notice the weather report on Mr. P’s iPad? When I posted the above photo on Instagram, eagle-eyed reader Rachel totally noticed and called me out on the temperature. That’s not the weather report from a St. Louis Thanksgiving, or even a Tennessee Thanksgiving!

We spent our Thanksgiving in a place that was much warmer, sunnier, and full of pseudo-western themes.

Namely: Phoenix, Arizona!

Earlier this year, not long after our Buffalo adventure, Mr. P’s great uncle passed away. This guy was quite the character, and so rather than flying in the whole family for a traditional somber funeral, Mr. P’s uncle had the idea to gather in Phoenix and celebrate his life over Thanksgiving.

I’ll be honest and admit my selfishness: I was not totally into the plan at first. I’d finally convinced my family to have a St. Louis Thanksgiving this year, and I was looking forward to hosting and NOT traveling. Going to Phoenix sounded so challenging compared to my original plan of staying here at my apartment in my jammies. And to add insult to the having-to-travel injury, plane tickets over Thanksgiving are OH MY GAH SO EXPENSIVE.

But as more and more members of Mr. P’s family bought their tickets for a desert Thanksgiving, I realized I needed to get over myself and my selfishness and go to Phoenix. Which ended up being, of course, a very good choice. We spent the whole holiday weekend in a way Uncle Jack would have heartily endorsed: having a blast!

There was our on-foot exploration of Scottsdale, including the art district and the Old Town, where I joined Mr. P on an oversized wooden chair.

I also lusted over a pair of $350 cowboy boots and came thisclose to buying a rhinestone-studded belt with an obnoxiously oversized and bedazzled buckle. Because the West mars your otherwise good taste surprisingly quickly!

We did as much as we could outdoors to soak up the warm weather. Mr. P’s sister and I even climbed a mountain!

Ok, it wasn’t Camelback (I’ve fought and lost that battle before), but it was two and a half miles and we knocked it out in under an hour. Also I was wearing dangly earrings and borrowed shoes. I consider that a win.

And because Mr. P’s uncle is a doctor for the Phoenix Coyotoes, we got these freaking awesome seats to the game on Saturday night against the Blackhawks.

Nine rows up on the red line! I forgot to wear my contacts and it didn’t even matter.

The game didn’t end so well for the Coyotes – we were cheering for them as it would have been better for our beloved Nashville Predators if the Blackhawks lost. But we had a fabulous time anyway!

After the game I had my first experience with another western tradition:

Super overrated. The burger and shake were good, but the fries were odd and overall it wasn’t special. I don’t know why Californians are in love with this place. Do they not have Five Guys?! Hmm. At least now I know for myself!

And if that wasn’t enough, we had even bigger adventures that I’ll save to tell you about tomorrow!

So in short: Thanksgiving in the desert is pretty amazing. Especially since I got to spend it with great family, remembering great family.

And in short sleeves. That’s a Thanksgiving for which I can be extra-grateful.