Now Playing: Fanks Gibbin'
Well, Maman told us it's coming up on the hoomin hollyday of Fanks Gibbin. She says that on This Day, hoomins who live more or less *here* are sus'posed to wake up, go watch a Parade, see Santa Claus, then have a Special Feast.
She says most of the HollyDay's Festivities vary slightly, according to each hoomin's Family Lore. Like some don't inklood enny "shopping" and some have different sorts of foods at their Feasts, and some have one kind of Treats and some have Udders, and *stuff* like that. And alla this is passed down to each hoomin according to their own Lore, which is how it should be.
Our Warren has Da Lore as it was told to me, George, by meHunny, *Senior Bun* of Our Warren, and every udder warren has their own Lore that is slightly different, but mainly the same in the Matter of Big Things because we are all HouseRabbits. Wild cottontail Bunnies have their Own Lore, too, which is the Lore of the Cottontails and different from that of HouseRabbits.
Ennyways, Maman got her Lore assa Little Child, and she has been feeling that she has to Pass On Her Lore, and so she has passed *some* of it to me. Afta the manner of HouseRabbits, I am passing it on to you.
Maman's Family is Very Old and has a Lotta Lore going back about three-hunnert years - and that's not inklooding When They Lived In Inkland. But they weren't around for the Furst Fanks Gibbin, because they weren't PilGrims (Maman said her family, although it was pretty grim, wasn't grim enough to be PilGrims. They were Welsh, prob'ly doing what today would be called "Sekurity" which means fighting and such) and their ship wasn't called the "Mayflower" (It was called the "Welcome") and it didn't land at Plymouth Rock (It landed in Phillydelphia). So Maman's family mainly missed having the Very Furst Fanks Gibbin, but Maman says they prob'ly would't have been invited ennyways onna'count obba Fakt that they weren't the most serious of the arrivals and going to Church prob'ly wasn't high on their List Of Priorities.
But ennyways, Maman says that by the time her Mother's Family and her Father's Family got around to her, Fanks Gibbin' mainly settled out This Way:
As soon as school let out, her Mother and Father would put her and their Dawg inna car and drive alla way down to Wilmington Delaware to her Aunt Margaret's and Unkul George's House. Their house was pretty much slightly South of where her Mother's Family had set up their Furst Warren, three hunnert years ago, and hadn't moved away from much, since. Like wild cottontails, they didn't seem to believe in moving far away from the Original Warren. Maman's Grandmother and Uncle lived in Delaware County, Pennsylvania, and one of Maman's uncles lived in West Chester, and one lived in Holly Oak, Delaware, and another also lived near to Chadd's Ford in Delaware County.
So on Fanks Gibbin Day, Everybun more or less turned up at Aunt Margaret's.
And Maman's Aunt Margaret didn't have enny children of her own, so she sort of *claimed* Maman (which sort of ticked off Maman's Mother) - and Maman and Aunt Margaret were very much alike. Aunt Margaret was a teacher and had a graduate degree and alla that, and loved books and took Maman everywheres with her when she could. And Aunt Margaret was very tall and proper and made sure that Maman had preddy dresses and matching handbags, gloves, hats and shoes, just like her. And a silk dressing-gown.
Maman says that every little hoomin girl should have a silk dressing gown if she wants one.
So on Fanks Gibbin Day, Aunt Margaret would take Maman with her to her Church. Maman's Father (who was Our Warren's Bim) would go too. then everybun would Go Fora Ride Inna Car to see the Parade in Wilmington.
And just to show you that Students Go Everywheres...
One year, Maman, her Mother, Her Dadda (Our Bim), Aunt Margaret and her husBun, Unkul George, were all watching the Parade go past the Hotel DuPont, when suddenly, some men onna back-end of a fire-truck began waving their hats and yelling,
"Doc! Hey Doc! Over here! Doc!"
And noBun could figure out at *whom* these guys were all yelling.
And then here came the men, dashing through the crowd of hoomins on the street. It was three men who had been Students of Our Bim's at the Teacher's College, who had become firemen in Wilmington Delaware! They had recognised Our Bim standing in the crowd and wanted to come and say "Hello" - so they had gotten off of their fire-truck and run back, three whole city blocks! Just to say "Hi".
Of course, Maman says Our Bim couldn't bemember their names after shaking hands with them and axting how they were doing and hearing about their lives in Delaware. But that was Normal-for-Bim - he allus had trouble bemembering his Students' names when they were in his class, let alone once they had graduated!
So Maman says Professors and Teachers have to beware - kids are like rats onna ship - allus Out There, ready to jump out at you when you're least expecting it.
Ennyways, at the very End of the Parade, there was allus Santa Claus inna sleigh with eight reindeer. Maman says this is because Fanks Gibbin issa Beginning of Christmas - and Santa Claus allus arrives inna Phillydelphia Area on Fanks Gibbin, according to her Family's Lore.
Of course, she didn't know Back Then When She Was Liddle that Santa Claus was also arriving at every other store in every other city in the United States, too. She just knew that he was arriving in Wilmington on Fanks Gibbin Day and would drive up to Phillydelphia to be in Wanamaker's when her Mother and Father took her there to see him.
In her mind, Santa Claus took the train, just like everyBunny else.
So afta the Parade, Aunt Margaret, Unkul George, Maman's Father and Mother and Maman would go into the Hotel DuPont and have Fanks Gibbin Dinner. And it was allus shrimp cocktail, then some kind of creamed soup that she would eat because it was impolite not to, and then turkey with stuffing with chestnuts, mashed potatoes, candied yams, whole string beans, peas and diced carrots, creamed onions, and cranberry sauce. Tomato aspic figured in it somewhere. And then there was allus ice cream and assorted pie, or coconut or German Chocolate cake for dessert. Maman says that Rice Pudding (or as she says, "maggots in cream sauce") could also happen.
Maman bemembers alla this because she has learned how to make most of these things, except the tomato aspic. She said she's never quite seen the use for aspic, in general, except as another way of getting the silverware messy.
And then Alla Them Togedder would leave the Hotel DuPont and get inna car to go and Visit Aunts, Unkuls and Cousins, and eat cold turkey sandwhiches on Raisin Bread (the making of which was anudder part of the Family Lore). Aunt Anne served Pepsi, which was something Maman (who grew up in a Coca-Cola house) never drank ennywhere's else. And everyBun ate Charles' Chips frumma can.
Then the Nextest Day, everyBunny woke up early and went to the Train Station in Claymont and caught the train to Phillydelphia. And everyBun went to Wanamaker's Department Store and solemly swore to Meet Unner the Eagle at Noon. That was the Pact: everyBun would meet Unner the Eagle at Noon. No matter Whut.
And Maman says that this is Her Lore, and she is passing it on to me, George.
Now HouseRabbits don't have Fanks Gibbin as part of Da Lore. We don't need a Hollyday to be reminded to say "Thank You" for having a home, and food, and sumBun to love us.
Some of us come from Shelters. Some of us have been rescued from Bad Places. Some of us have been Abused. Many of us have gone for days and days being sad, terrified and OnAlone with noBun to care for and noBun to care for Us.
So for Alla Us Togedder every day is a day full of Thanks Giving.
And this is Our Lore, as it was told to me, George, by meHunny *Senior Bun* of Our Warren:
Hoppy Thanks Giving Day, Every Day to Every Bun!
--------------------------------- By George