ESl Life Abroad - Crystal Powell
What are American holidays like?
Fourth of July, Halloween and Thanksgiving--- holidays I have experienced in USA--I am a big fan of holidays, simply because I love the holiday atmosphere and you can do something special in your daily life. Fortunately, I have experienced three American holidays:
Fourth of July, which is also called “Independence Day” in the United States, is one of the most important holidays for Americans. It is celebrated to honor the independence from England on July 4, 1776. It is a national holiday, therefore people who work for the government are able to have the day off to celebrate. It is just like the Chinese National Holiday on October 1st.
I was with my husband’s family when the holiday was celebrated. His family’s relatives all flew to Nashville, where I was staying. It was a big family reunion. Everyone was told to wear something with the colors of the American flag: red, white and blue. I remember I wore a pair of jeans with the colors on it. Everyone was joking because I was the only Chinese person there. The night before, we started a bonfire outdoors. Everyone gathered around the fire talking about what was going on with their lives and the memories they shared.
On July 4th, a lot of streets in Nashville were blocked by police for a big parade through the city from 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM. Music, balloons, floats, flowers, and flags could be seen everywhere. Like the Chinese National Holiday, it was very crowded with thousands of people lining the streets. I am not a big fan of crowds. At night, you could see fireworks in the sky and we went to an open place and sat on a blanket and enjoyed the beauty of them. People were eating barbecue and argued about the baseball game they just watched during the day. It was so much fun!
Halloween was another holiday I celebrated. I have to say, mostly, it is a holiday for kids. People decorated their houses with spider webs, skeletons, and pumpkins. Teenagers tried to scare their friends with fake blood capsules and other gadgets. Watching thrillers on Halloween is also a common thing to do on this day. My friends invited me to a thriller marathon, but I had to turn them down because scary movies are not my thing.
Instead, I went to a supermarket here called “Target” to get some candy for the kids who were to visit our house that night. When I got to the store, I am not exaggerating, half of the candy shelf was empty. Kids here ate a lot of candy that day.
After dinner, our first group of visitors came. They knocked on our door. A boy dressed like Spiderman and a girl dressed like a princess said, “Trick or Treat?” I gave them a handful of candy from the basket I prepared earlier. People dress in costumes like something scary or like movie characters when they go out. It is just for fun!
Thanksgiving (the fourth Thursday of November) is a good time to appreciate what you have in your life and be thankful. It is also a good time for everyone to eat a big feast. More than 45 million turkeys are cooked and eaten in the U.S. at Thanksgiving. Poor turkeys! You probably can guess what people eat on Thanksgiving. However, there are many more dishes: stuffing, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, bread rolls, steamed green beans, pumpkin pie, apple pie, and sweet potatoes. The kitchen was chaos on that day in our house. I volunteered to make the steamed green beans. It was very simple to make: steam the green beans, mix them up with butter and some garlic. Voila! It was done within ten minutes.
Christmas: A holiday I am looking forward to.
Thanksgiving kicks off the Christmas season. People start to decorate for Christmas, like putting up Christmas trees and lights. I saw a family put Christmas wreaths on their front doors already. Christmas music has started to play in some shops. I haven’t experienced Christmas in the USA, so I am looking forward to it very much. I will update my column next month for this holiday. Stay tuned!
独立日,万圣节和感恩节---我在美国亲身体验过的节日我是一个节日狂, 只是因为我喜爱节日的气氛,并且在你的日常生活中你可以做一些新鲜的事情. 幸运的是, 我体验到了三个美国的节日:
七月四日, 在美国被称为”独立日”, 是美国重要节日之一. 是为了纪念1776年7月4日从英国获得独立. 这是一个全国性的节日, 所以政府人员可以有一天或几天的休假. 就像是中国10月01日的国庆节.
我是和我先生的家人一起度过这个节日的. 他所有的亲戚都坐飞机来到了纳什维尔. 那是一个全家大团圆.每个人都要身穿美国国旗上的颜色:白色, 红色和蓝色. 我记得我穿了一条带这些颜色的牛仔裤. 每个人都在开我的玩笑,因为我是那里惟一的中国人. 前一天晚上, 我们在户外燃起了篝火. 大家聚在在篝火旁谈论着他们的生活和他们曾经共有的记忆.