There’s a few personal notes at the end of this post, but first my annual digression on holidays…
Thanksgiving is among our most traditional holidays, having no real grounding in any specific religious holidays but being grounded in the European Tradition of a Harvest Feast which probably goes back well into the Neolithic.
Several groups of Spanish Explorers celebrated Thanksgiving feasts in spring in Texas, notably Coronado in 1541, and Juan de Onate in 1598, after nearly dying of thirst in the Chihuahuan desert. Martin Frobisher celebrated a Thanksgiving in Baffin Bay in 1578.
But the celebration moved into the realm of something fun that we might recognize with settlers in New France who established annual Thanksgiving Feasts at the end of the harvest season. Samuel de Champlain formed the “Order of Good Cheer,” the first order of chivalry under the sponsorship of Jean de Biencourt, Baron de Poutrincourt, not only to organize feasts and toasts but entertainment, including theatre.
It’s possible the settlers at Roanoake Island North Carolina also celebrated a Thanksgiving during the three years that they were abandoned in the late 1580s, but the main course may have been “each other,” since the colonists were likely starving and nobody knows what happened to them, though there’s some hope they were enslaved by the Indians and forced into a life of comparative plenty and shameless fornication.
In the British United States, Thanksgiving originated, like most important firsts such as Distilling, Tobbacco, and probably murder, from my home state of Virginia where Jamestown celebrated Thanksgiving from around 1607. The celebration was incorporated in the charter of Berkeley Hundred, around 1619.
The Separatist Pilgrims who settled at Plymouth in 1621 also celebrated a Thanksgiving Feast, celebrating their deliverance from safe urban prosperity in Leiden among the libertine Dutch to the wilderness of North America where they could endure hardship and privation in order to impose a strict religious rule. The somewhat more laid back Puritans who came to Boston a decade or so later may have continued the tradition.
In any case…Happy Thanksgiving!
Thanks to All…
It’s been a tough fall for the household with many challenges presented by health and the chances of finance….but we’ve done very well largely due to the character, determination, and goodwill of every one of us. I could not ask for a better household or finer people, and I’m thankful.
Several of my friends have also enjoyed good years. Some have found happiness in new relationships, others have endured depression or hardship and found stability and calm, or found new horizons. For that I’m especially thankful.
I’ve been largely absent here and on Fet for about the past two months…going on three…long enough to be remarked on. There’s nothing wrong. Following our successful late summer Workshop, I began working on a writing project to present what I’ve learned about the psychology of Power Exchange over the past ten years, loosely based on the framework of the booklet. The project rapidly expanded to about 150k words. It’s been “done” in terms of principal writing for weeks, but the revising is far harder than writing and beating the mass of words into a concise, orderly, draft is taking some time.
I have a hard deadline to have the Ms. published and available through print on demand and Amazon Kindle by February 1, but I hope to have it out by early January.
I don’t like talking publicly about writing projects till they’re mostly done, but this one is sliding towards completion. That said, I’m looking for people with an interest in the topic who might be willing to read the revised draft. Please feel free to contact me at the address in the sidebar if you’re interested. I’ll have some people for grammar and proofreading, so I’m looking for folks who care about the subject and can provide feedback about logical topic order, framing and presentation.
And if you’re a close friend and I haven’t leaned on you in private… please don’t feel neglected..I’m sure I will, but feel free to make me feel less guilty about imposing by dropping me a line!
It’s been a good year, and despite some hardships a lot of good things have happened and moved forward. Peace, prosperity and happiness to all of you!