In American culture, there are specific holidays that hold a special spot in our hearts, one of them being Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is held on the last Thursday of the month of November and it is a holiday that bring family and friends together to share what they are thankful for as they feast on traditional American Thanksgiving cuisine. The thought of spending Thanksgiving away from my family and friends was at first hard to take in, especially since I have never spent one without my family. Thanksgiving is not celebrated in China so I was afraid that this holiday would be forgotten. Thanks to the mentorship program set-up in China, we could celebrate Thanksgiving! The mentors planned a party which had a variety of activities such as karaoke, pool table, video games, and traditional American Thanksgiving cuisine.
This Thanksgiving has made me extremely grateful for my family abroad. I knew that traveling to China would be life-changing, but I never expected to create such unique bonds with the students and mentors. The mentorship program went above and beyond with making sure we celebrated this holiday as a family. All the American students were deeply touched and grateful to have a group of individuals that care about us so much. I was extremely impressed when I saw that the mentor program members were preparing traditional American cuisine such as turkey, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, and vegetables along with other dishes. I would have been thrilled with traditional Chinese food, but the fact that they did this was remarkable. Having these dishes brought back memories of my mother’s cooking. Overall, my experience this Thanksgiving was one that I will ever forget. It reminded me that regardless of where you are from or whether there is a language barrier, or diverse cultures, family and friends can unite and be grateful for one another.