Thanksgiving, to most Americans, is a holiday in which families gather to feast on traditional dishes, and give thanks for the blessings of their lives. Yet to most Texas A&M University – Kingsville (TAMUK) international students, it’s just a weird day where everyone goes home and classes are cancelled for no apparent reason.
These students at TAMUK all have different plans for Thanksgiving, but not all of them include turkey, mashed potatoes, or cranberry sauce.
“I don’t really understand why everyone get’s all excited over thanksgiving, I still don’t see the point in it, but I’m off for half a week, I’ll take it,” said Tabata Lua, freshman from Mexico City, Mexico, “I have no plans but I’m a bit worried on where I’m going to eat because everything closes on that day.”
In a relative sense, most students don’t travel much more than down the road to be with their families. They may not know what it feels like to be 10,000 miles away from
“I’d give anything to see my sisters and parents this week. I can only imagine how lonely and boring Thanksgiving weekend is going to be for me,” said Mohammad Delhi, Pakistanian native, junior.
Some students are experiencing Thanksgiving for the first time.
“My roommate is from Saudi Arabia and I knew she wasn’t going to do anything for Thanksgiving, so I’m bringing her home with me,” said Gloria McCook, sophomore, “She’s probably going to be in pure culture-shock with all the food and hugs from my family, but hey we’re country, that’s how we do it down where I’m from.”
Lian Yang, a Chinese native and freshman plans on visiting Houston for Thanksgiving to
receive an ‘American Experience.’
“I have unofficial plans to go to Houston with some friends but it’s not settled yet. I’d love to see the big city, shop, and see the university,” he said, “In my country we don’t celebrate Thanksgiving but I would love to try it here, I’m very excited.”
But Thanksgiving isn’t the only autumn holiday. Starting Nov. 13, ‘Diwali’, an Indian festival is celebrated all around the world by Indians in victory of the Good over Evil and Light over Darkness. Diwali is a festival lasting over 5 days and is often called the “Festival of Lights”.
“I imagine Thanksgiving is something like Diwali but I’m not sure if it’s fair to compare since I’ve never celebrated Thanksgiving. It might be a little on the sad side for me though since I know almost nothing about that tradition,” said Mohammed Delhi, “But Diwali is the best festival in India and my roommates and I are celebrating here in our apartment for these upcoming days.”
This coming week, there will be many who won’t be home with their families, nor celebrating any sort of holiday; be it Thanksgiving or otherwise. To them, Nov. 22 is just another Thursday.
That or they use it as “Black Friday preparation day,” the most sacred American holiday of them all.