Don’t Visit Your Family on Thanksgiving.

I have one very special Thanksgiving tradition, and I honestly honor it every year: while everyone starts to download Amtraks, Bolt Buses, and overpriced flights, I stay god damn right there, refusing to travel to visit absolutely anyone. It is wonderful.

First, my refusal to leave the city for a holiday has nothing to do with my family. They are wonderful! And I will see them in less than a month, when I use another very expensive cross country flight to visit them for a longer and more leisurely period of time over Christmas. It would be foolish to deal with the significant hassle and expense involved in visiting them for two days – just a month before I planned to visit them for a full week. Be that as it may, my parents agree with me.

Even if your family lives closer than 3,000 miles, a $ 700 flight, if they are only a few minutes away by subway or car (60 minutes maximum), you can bet that getting to them would be hell on earth. Namely:

And that’s not to mention the rampant drunk driving that happens on and around Thanksgiving. Wouldn’t your loved ones prefer you to stay put and away from dangerous, congested highways? You may see them another time, when your safety is not so compromised.

This brings us to another point: The Wednesday before Thanksgiving has become known as one of the drunkest nights of the year, when people get too drunk with old friends (or enemies) in their hometown bars. Do you really want to expose your emotions and your liver to this kind of stress? It is much better to stay and spend time relaxed with other people who chose not to travel for the holiday weekend, who undoubtedly banded together while everyone else rushed out of town (see also: staying in town on the 4th). July or Memorial Day weekend). And if you’re not exposing yourself to holiday travel hell, the night before Thanksgiving is a lot of fun to date as well.

But this is not a special practice of entering and leaving large cities. No travel Thanksgiving started in my first year of college when it was too expensive to fly from the Midwest back to the Pacific Northwest for a lonely weekend — most of which would have been the cumbersome and unpleasant commute. Instead, I stayed in dorms with other West Coast stragglers, went to the $ 3 cinema at the local theater, polished jugs of cheap wine, and perfected the art of storing the remains of a (shockingly delicious) canteen over the years. Thanksgiving at Tupperware for future reference.

After moving to New York after graduation from college, the holiday took on a different character, but unlike friends who may have tough times with their families, Thanksgiving as a free agent has never been anything but great. Flies out of someone else’s Friendsgiving? Dunk clapping every time. A one-on-one Thanksgiving restaurant with an old friend? Calm and perfect. Sharing Thanksgiving with my neighbors and neighbors? Huge success for several years in a row! Does the party jump from supper to supper? Take me in a taxi and I’m there. Have you been invited to a family dinner? It’s cozy and without drama, and even if there are family fights, you have no skin in the game. Pour in another glass of wine and wait for it to pass! Once all of this is done, instead of struggling to find mutually enjoyable movies and battling the crowds of Black Friday over the next few days, you’ll be faced with a three-day weekend during which you can go shopping during the holidays or get busy. what you like. damn it please. Nobody will blame you for anything, thank you.

Oddly enough, I would venture to suggest that Thanksgiving alone can also make you better. Thanksgiving wasn’t a huge deal for me growing up — it was usually just our nuclear family — and having varied, a few random experiences on Thanksgiving each year made me much more open than I am usually inclined to. Most of the time, I’m a bit of a finicky jerk when it comes to who and what to invite. (One wrong person can ruin the whole atmosphere !!! ) But on Thanksgiving, all bets are not accepted – complete strangers, someone’s strange relatives, even unpleasant partners of friends get a pass for the day, since we are all jumbled together for the sake of theoretically a “family” holiday. So much bounty (food and spirit) was given to me as Rando for Thanksgiving that in turn I found myself wanting to extend it to others.

Of course, this is largely based on my own experience of Thanksgiving, but if you do not live in the same city as your family, or Thanksgiving is not one of the biggest gathering days of the year for you and yours, I highly recommend you at least consider canceling your trip. Tell your family that you love them, talk to your friends about some last minute plans, and book a date to see your family during a cheaper, less stressful time of the year. This will make your holiday much better.


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