First of all a language lesson; the animal we eat in North America is called “hindi” in Turkey.
Three years ago today, Christmas Eve – day, we were in Kesan at the Kipa shopping for our Christmas meal. There at the meat counter, between the lamb and the stew beef we found fresh turkey. Since then we’ve never seen fresh whole turkey at Kipa or any other grocery store in our area and we’ve looked. We did see a pen of live turkeys in a residential area of Istanbul a couple of weeks ago. Turks sometimes eat hindi at New Years.
Yesterday, we visted grocery stores: Kipa (Gelibolu, Sarkoy and Kesan), Ozmar (Gelibou), Onur Market (Sarkoy), Migros (Kesan) and four or five independent butchers in Gelibolu and Sarkoy. Cam also called our “pork supplier” in Tekirdag and asked him to check out the Carrefour and then he called a colleague who agreed to “ask around”.
A couple of years ago we ordered a fresh turkey from an independent butcher in a little town near our home. One of Cam’s colleagues ordered it on our behalf. We would have, could have gone back to this butcher shop, but one of Cam’s employer’s former suppliers left the region two years ago owing money to a lot of local businesses. The butcher associates Cam with this company. So every time we darken the door, he asks Cam for the money. The butcher’s been told that Cam works for a different company and we always pay cash. (Sadly there are a few places we don’t shop for this reason.)
Leg of lamb (We call it LEGO lamb.) has been our special occasion meal the last few years. We usually eat it at Thanksgiving and Christmas. It makes a festive meal, but this year, this year I really wanted turkey and Cam has done everything he could to make that wish a reality. (He really is the best!)
Our “pork supplier” called back to say that the Carrefour in Tekirdag doesn’t have any turkey. However, when Cam’s colleague called back yesterday, he had a question; “Do you want it cooked, ready to cook or alive?”
So it’s Christmas Eve – day and I don’t know whether we’ll be eating the chicken that’s still in my freezer or a turkey we don’t own yet. In the end it won’t really matter, Christmas isn’t about what’s on the table as much as who’s around it as we sing Happy Birthday to Jesus.
We hope that you will experience peace and joy in this season and perhaps a slice of turkey with people who love you.