The holiday season is here, and everyone is getting in on the holiday spirit. You’ll notice every department store putting up decorations as well as multiple neighbors. Planning the ever important Thanksgiving and Christmas gathering gives way to good times and bad times, but the time we spend with family and friends are memories to cherish forever.
Things can get crazy during the holiday season, especially in food stores around Thanksgiving. Turkeys are the main food item to have when preparing for these dinners.
Hayward resident and FoodMaxx employee Walter Carrasco recalled a rather odd situation involving turkeys. “Two years ago during the week of Thanksgiving, a man was trying to sneak two big turkeys in his pants. It was so obvious that my boss was just standing there in front of him probably thinking ‘Are you kidding me?’ It was hilarious when he tried to run out the door. He didn’t get the turkeys. They fell out of his pants the second he moved.”
Mark Conover, a self-employed locksmith, remembers what he considers to be a “time-honored tradition” from his childhood. “We would have Thanksgiving at my Aunt’s house in San Francisco. I would sneak out of the house with the other kids and go over to the shopping district to dumpster dive behind department stores like Sears and JCPenny to find toys that were thrown away.”
The holidays can be busy for schoolteachers as well. Ginger Clark, a teacher at California High School in San Ramon, recalled her tradition as a child of transforming coins on New Year’s Eve. “An unusual family celebration tradition was when I was about 10, my grandfather and grandmother believed if we put out pennies on New Year’s Eve, they would all be turned into nickels and quarters.
This time of year other big events are celebrated, such as Hanukkah and Kwanzaa. Sometimes, the results can be pretty silly. Hayward resident Helene Adams remembers celebrating Hanukkah and Christmas, as well as teaching her son the Hava Nagila, a Jewish song to be sung on Hanukkah nights. “When I was a little girl, between 5 and 8, I lived in a very conservative Jewish household. Christmas used to fall in the middle of Hanukkah. We celebrated Christmas with presents and Hanukkah with money. Jewish kids in the neighborhood also got presents twice, which was very nice.”
“When I got married and had two children, the youngest stayed with us. We taught him as much as we could about the Jewish religion. While trying to teach him the Hava Nagila in Yiddish, he finally learned to sing it, but the only way he could sing it was by standing on the edge of the couch and holding on to the front door knob. It was very funny, and we took lots of pictures.”
While reading about these memories of holidays past, it is important to remember to make memories of your own. The holidays are meant to be spent with family, to have conversations, bond with relatives and have amazing food. Make sure to think of the family this holiday season and the good times you’ll spend with them.