It's the day before Thanksgiving in the U.S. Tomorrow families and friends will gather together to share time with each other for a long standing holiday and tradition. Most of us will be in some warm, comfortable environment, either a home or restaurant. Some may be at a Salvation Army Hall or a mission or a homeless shelter or a temporary housing situation. Most of us have much to be thankful for. Too many of us probably can't begin to make a list of all we have and we take it for granted.
In my book, the thing we should all be thankful for in the U.S. is the right and privilege we have to define and enjoy our personal freedom as we choose. Maybe some folks don't realize how precious this is and maybe you've chosen to be in a situation that doesn't make you feel very free, but in virtually every case, that's a choice we each made in some way or another.
I would ask that as you spend the day, wherever you are in the U.S. and however you spend it, please remember all those who are not in their homes this Thanksgiving due to Hurricane Sandy, the wild fires and any of the other natural calamities that have befallen our brothers and sisters. Remember our military and government personnel deployed around the world, the majority of them separated from their families. Remember those who may be homeless by choice or by circumstance. Be thankful for the many people who are volunteering to help those who are less fortunate than themselves and doing their best to make Thanksgiving a better day for those less fortunate folks.
I am thankful that those in important public service, health and welfare and convenience jobs are there working for us like the police, fire, EMT, hospital, nursing facility and gas station/convenience stores personnel.
I am not terribly enthusiastic about the entire Black Friday concept, but commerce is what make this country great and free. However, I am extremely disappointed in this intrusion into the traditional holiday by so many of the major chain stores opening on Thanksgiving Day. It really bothers me to see news footage of people camping outside of these huge box stores and foregoing time with family, friends and one simple day of tradition to fight over buying more "stuff." That's a sad statement on our society and one reason people in other countries have some negative attitudes about us. I'm totally disappointed in the management of these retail chains who are requiring their employees to leave their family and friends all for the sake of the bottom line. Shame on you! But, that's just my opinion. You won't find me there spending any money.
And to my readers around the world, I hope, if you don't have your own "Day of Thanks" holiday, you will share in ours, count your blessings and be thankful for your lives and what you have. If you are able to realize your personal freedom and live the life you choose to, I hope you are doing so. If you are not as free or don't have as many opportunities as others, that you will continue to strive toward achieving your dreams and personal freedom.
I also wish you safe and uneventful travels to and from your destination if you'll be away from home. My best to you all.