Thanksgiving is perhaps my favorite of the 365 days. People you love, good food, naps, comfy couches, TV, and getting drunk, classily. I can’t think of anything else I’d want in a day. It’s a hard day to miss. Luckily, Peace Corps volunteers flock to the capital for Thanksgiving to celebrate together.

I met up with friends on Wednesday night and we spent the night catching up, eating pizza, and watching a movie in our hostel room. Tranquilo.

Thanksgiving morning we woke up before 6 in order to catch a bus to the beautiful park Mirador del Sur  in the rich part of Santo Domingo where all the politicians live. We ran a 5K with the other volunteers who dragged themselves out of bed and then played football and volleyball. Around 11 we caught a bus to meet up with all the lazy/smart volunteers who were already partying in the rooftop pool of a beautiful hotel.

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After a few hours the food was ready! And we headed to the banquet hall and gorged ourselves on food and HOMEMADE pies.

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The banquet hall! Time to EAT.

Yes, the PCDR has a Thanksgiving pie-making committee. I hope to be a part of it next year, but I’m not holding my breath. It’s very competitive. And we still got to get drunk albeit maybe not too classily. Leah bought us each a glass of red wine to accompany our Thanksgiving lunch but we were short on the money (we literally spent all the money we had on us) and handed the money over, coins and small bills, in cupped hands. I think the waiter sensed our desperation and let the lacking fifty cents slide.

After the feast we retreated to the part of city volunteers can actually afford to stay in. A lot of volunteers went to the mall (an air-conditioned, WiFi palace) to see Hunger Games: Catching Fire. And later that night a lot of people went to dance at a bar/club that was reserved for Peace Corps volunteers and their guests.

 

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It was a day of epic distractions, but what made it actually feel like Thanksgiving (besides the amazing pies) was being able to Skype my family and see my cousin’s babies, my sister and her boyfriend, who I guess is becoming a regular fixture at family holidays, and, in general, just see how pale my whole family is so that I can feel better about my life here. I can’t wait for next Thanksgiving! One year is too long to wait to swim on a roof. 

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Leah, me, Lauren, and Grayson. 

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