Did I ever mention that I don’t like long car rides?
Then how the heck did I end up on another 10 1/2-hour marathon drive from Montana to Denver? Oh right, COVID.
Typically, over Thanksgiving we go to So Cal for the week. We actually kept thinking that we were still going to go. right up until two days before we were scheduled to leave. With an impending stay-at-home order coming from California Governor Newsom we decided that continuing with our plans was probably not the best idea.
Backup plan: fly to Bozeman, have Thanksgiving with Evan, drive back to Denver with him (no, we weren’t kidnapping him: he started winter break).
DIA was a breeze, our flight was half full, and Bozeman seemed to have emptied out with the school’s break. Upon arriving at the rental car counter, the agent offered to upgrade me to a full-sized Dodge truck (like the one I drove up in the summer). I said sure, sounds good! Then she said, “Oh, by the way, its only two-wheel drive.”
Hmmm. “Any snow forecast for the next few days?”
Her reply, “Nope. Roads are bone dry and no snow in the forecast.”
Off we went in our big truck. Next morning I looked outside: it was snowing.
Snowed all day. Tried to take the truck out at dinner time, and found myself stuck in fewer than 3 minutes. Took me 30 minutes to get it back to the hotel. Didn’t move it again for two days.
Okay, so it was a little cold and icy. It was still beautiful. The town is small, the mountains breathtaking. Like most everyone, our Thanksgiving was not “the usual,” including going to Costco on the Wednesday afternoon before Thanksgiving. It was empty! (That would *never* happen in L.A., nor at Park Meadows).
Hence the day after Thanksgiving I found myself back in the same car I drove up to him in September. Oh well.
One last note on the holidays.
As you might have already guessed, my family celebrates Hanukkah. Well, sort of. We are not very religious, mostly my kids expect (and I do mean expect) two things at this time of year: presents and latkes. I think everyone knows what a present is. If you aren’t sure about latkes, they are a little plop of potato and onion fried joy.
I make latkes at least one-time during Hanukkah. It is the same recipe that my grandmother used. Except she never used a recipe, it was all by feel. Fortunately, my cousin videotaped her making them and then transcribed it into a recipe for me. I too now do it by feel.
Any person who prides themselves as a latke maker will say that “their latkes are the best.” I know mine are the best. When my kids were in Hebrew school, at Hanukkah the parents would be asked to bring in latkes for their child’s class. The teachers would whisper to one another, “Where are the Ross kids?” They knew which class to sneak over to.
Every year, including this one, I get calls and texts from people asking if I am bringing them latkes. COVID disrupted any big parties with latkes, but latkes I did make. Happy holidays, and may you be able to carry out any and all of your traditions.
All the best,