It was customary in my family for one of my sisters or me to cook Thanksgiving dinner. We took turns, and invited extended family to the feast. One year, my sister's sister-in-law, who came every year to one of our homes for Thanksgiving but had never hosted dinner herself, invited us all out to a restaurant for Thanksgiving dinner. Her apartment was too small to accommodate us all, so this was her way of reciprocating.
We all met at my sister Sheron's home for pre-Thanksgiving dinner snacks. My father decided he needed to take a little nap before we went to dinner and went upstairs to lie down.
About an hour later, it was time to leave for the restaurant. There were four cars full of people. When we arrived at the restaurant and went inside, it took a good 15 minutes for us to realize that my father wasn't there.
"I thought Dad went with you," my sister Arlene said to me.
"No, I took Mom," I replied.
We called my sister's house, and a very sleepy Dad answered the phone. He said, "Is it time to leave for the restaurant yet?" My sister told him we were all at the restaurant and her husband would go back to her house to get him. We all had a good laugh. When Dad arrived, he was all smiles. He said, "I almost slept through Thanksgiving dinner." We assured him that we would never let that happen.
I only wish that my mother and father were still here to enjoy Thanksgiving with us. Every year, we mention that story, and we all have a good laugh, and sometimes a few tears, too.
--Maureen Kessler Fried, East Meadow