“That day we cook the big chicken” is what one of our neighbors called Thanksgiving, which seemed entirely appropriate to me. That year my husband and I invited all of our neighbors—refugees mostly from Bhutan and Somalia—to the community center of our low-income apartment complex to experience a traditional American holiday meal.
It was not going well.
People had filed into the community room, sitting at folding tables. We’d asked a few friends and family members to help us cook, and striving to be culturally appropriate, my husband and I dished up the plates and served them to the guests starting with the most distinguished (older, male) and ending with the children.