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Poem: Ode to Thanksgiving Pilgrimages to NJ*

It is said, 80-90% Americans drive over 50 miles to be with their families on Thanksgiving. Sometimes they drive for 20 hours after work on
Thanksgiving Drive Home
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Thanksgiving dividerThe holiday season is a time for family, food, friends, and celebrations. It is about remembering and reminiscing about your loved ones and the traditions we carry forward.  It is the time to take time off your busy everyday life and spend some time with your near and dears. We all get into the spirit of diving and bringing out the cherished moments of our childhood days. We live those days all over again and time travel. Parents wait for their kids to come home, and the siblings look forward to sharing the new happenings in their lives, sitting at the same old dining table, and sleeping in their old beds where they remember so many of their first things in life.  Nostalgia, La vie est belle. Indeed, life is beautiful. 

We wish everyone a very happy day! A good harvest for the coming year.

Twice a year, in America, there are two very formal meals at every house: Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve. Three of four generations gather around, and the best China comes off the cabinet. Dinner is cooked with heirloom recipes of Turkey, cranberry sauce, pumpkin pecan pies, and more.  At  Thanksgiving, the table is set with a fresh white linen tablecloth. The pressed and embroidered linen napkins deck the settings. Twice a year, it is ceremonial time we set aside for friends and families. 

An estimated 55 million Americans will drive over 50 miles to be with their families on Thanksgiving. Some will drive over twenty hours to be home for Thanksgiving dinner on Thursday, and it’s all worth it. After all, it’s Family Time!

Sherry M.  remembers her drive from Washington D.C. to New Jersey every year for the past thirty years and has shared Ode to Thanksgiving with us. The child in us is always alive.  Happy Thanksgiving!  

Ode to Thanksgiving Pilgrimages to NJ*
(for over 30 years)

(Sing along  to the tune of  your favorite nursery rhymes)

Onto the highway and thru the tolls, to cousins’ homes, we go

The car knows the way, to bring us today, by using the maps on our phones.


Chill in the air, but nary a care, no work to do this week.

Just travel around from town to town, kissing family on the cheek.


A perk of the day since it’s a 5H drive away, we can never be tasked with food.

Instead, we will buy, some wine or a pie, isn’t that very good?


We start with a smile, cuz traveling a while, on I95, it’s true,

there’s traffic and roadwork and maybe some detours, to make the best driver blue.


Stop at the Shop, for soda pop, maybe pretzels, coffee and news, a T-shirt or two,

extra gifts, or a few stuffed animals join our crew.


Counting the exits on that famous road, up the Jersey way.

Planning what not to discuss, no politics or fuss, just enjoy the company and day.


Traveling back thru Lancaster trails, horses, and wagons in view. Another yearly

space, at the childhood friend’s place, and visit a garden too.


So many stops, and so many hops, we travel and travel all day, at

last, we are home, but again we will roam, on another holiday! Hey!


Thanks Giving Drive Home

Image courtesy: internet, Peakpx 
*NJ – New Jersey, the US state on the east coast.

Sherry Marlowe is a pediatric hospitalist physician in Gaithersburg, Maryland. After 30 years of medical practice, she found the courage to start the writing hobby she had always wanted to attempt. She tries to put family memories and anecdotes on paper to reframe them in a literary fashion for fun.

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