The anticipation lasted 28 days.
Ever since I found out about the Thanksgiving party planned at the Shamrock, one of my favorite sports bars, I had been counting down the days.
The big day finally arrived and I woke up grinning. I knew I was about to spend my favorite holiday eating traditional food for the first time since 2010.
I spent the morning wishing people Happy Thanksgiving and then I got ready to head to the restaurant.
You get off the bus by Estacion Poblado, which means a bit of an uphill walk to the Parque Lleras area, but when you’re about to do some carbo-loading, you can’t complain about a little cardio ahead of time.
I made a couple of stops to say hello to some friends then went to the Shamrock, just in time for the first football game. It was a blowout, 40-10, Detroit over Green Bay.
Before it ended, I had eaten my food, one of more than 40 people to enjoy the spoils of that afternoon.
I had turkey, stuffing and garlic mashed potatoes, all topped with gravy and mushrooms. On the side were sweet potato, asparagus, cranberry sauce, Monterey jack-flavored pasta and a small dinner roll.
I was so full. Then Andrea brought me my piece of pumpkin pie. I could barely move when I was done.
I sat there, flitting in and out of my food coma, struggling to find the energy to watch one more game. Zach, manager of the Shamrock, helped me find it, his emotion fueled through his fandom for Dallas, one of the teams in the next game.
Oakland provided a scare, but the Cowboys prevailed, 31-24.
Around that time, my roommate and my friend Florence ordered nachos. I had no idea how they were able to eat more. I had one tortilla chip with a little bit of cheese and I felt completely full all over again.
The Baltimore-Pittsburgh game started shortly thereafter and we stuck around for the first half, but that was all we could handle. It was time to sleep off all we had ate, some (my roommate) more than others (me).
During the taxi ride home I thought about what a great day it was, how happy I was to recreate the Thanksgivings I had grown accustomed to in the United States.
Only one thing made me sad: “I have to wait another year for this day,” I thought, a much longer period of anticipation than the last one, when I found out 28 days before Thanksgiving that there would be a great event.
I received good news two days later. The turkey-day turnout has motivated Zach to do something similar on Christmas, actually two days before, on Dec. 23.
I doubt there will be a gift exchange and Zach probably won’t even put up a tree, but I have not cared about those things since I was a kid.