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Letter from America: One blessed day of nothing

Regulars | By Philip Delves Broughton | December 2017


Mayhem – then perfect peace. That’s the promise of Thanksgiving

Four months after I arrived in New York in 1998, I asked an English friend, a writer for a fashion magazine, about Thanksgiving. ‘Not a big deal,’ she told me. ‘It’s an afternoon. A day. Then back to work.’ I’ve learned since: never trust a thin person on the subject of food. I spent that first Thanksgiving sitting on the roof of my apartment building in the West Village after an early snowfall, bundled up and reading Willie Morris’s memoir of life in New York and Mississippi, North Toward Home. It’s a great book, but it wasn’t turkey. A couple of years later, I had my first real Thanksgiving. November 2000. In June, I’d met the woman who would eventually become my wife. She invited me for Thanksgiving at her cousin Jocelyn’s. I had spent most of the month down in Florida, reporting on the recounts after the George Bush/Al...

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