Giving Thanks

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Giving Thanks

Thanksgiving came to Djibouti a few days late. It landed twenty minutes early on Friday and was greeted by three families holding three “Welcome Home” signs and bear hugs all around and laughter and tears and arguments with airport officials about visas.

Because Thanksgiving came to Djibouti in the form of the end of the first term at boarding school.

And we were thankful.

Our, now complete, family drove home to show the twins our new house and the signs Lucy posted all over. We sat down to a meal of Djibouti Jones sandwiches, made by dad, and to hear the latest news. We crashed on the couch after lunch, legs and arms intertwined, and rested until it was time for the annual Thanksgiving baseball game.

After baseball, people gathered at our house for pie, though there was only one actual pie. There was samboosa and baguettes with Nutella and popcorn and loads of goodies. There were people from Congo, Djibouti, America, England, Britain, Ireland.

And we were all thankful.

Saturday was turkey day, everything made from scratch and with the sweat of love. Or thankfulness. Or Djiboutian kitchens where the stove has been on for six hours straight.

We were thankful again.

Sunday I noticed five pairs of shoes near the door. I counted five breakfast bowls in the sink, three children in the backseat of the car, three children to kiss goodnight, three children to remind to eat their carrots.

And I was very thankful.

What are you very thankful for?

By |November 27th, 2012|Categories: Djibouti Life|Tags: |4 Comments


  1. Susan Parker November 27, 2012 at 10:15 am - Reply

    I am so happy to see that you have all of your family home for the holidays! I am very thankful for my time in Djibouti. This small country has opened my heart, broken my heart and made me feel life in a very intense way. When I come home I am very thankful to live where life is still pretty simple and we can grow vegetables, drink water staight out of the well and raise animals to feed ourselves. I have always kind of taken these things for granted until I went to Djibouti. Now I know how hard and cruel life is for people who have no potable water, no fertile soil, no shade trees, no rain and no grass to feed their animals.

    • Rachel Pieh Jones
      Rachel Pieh Jones November 27, 2012 at 12:09 pm - Reply

      I’m so glad you commented Susan, I’ve enjoyed hearing your thoughts about Djibouti and seeing your openness to all the beauty and hardship that is the reality of life here. It is true that living here puts a fresh spin on gratitude.

  2. Dad November 20, 2013 at 7:37 pm - Reply

    Tears of joy. Dad

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