Thanksgiving in Bologna is bittersweet. I had a fantastic day (a fantastic two days, really, full of all things American.) We went to a mall and got hamburgers yesterday, and then spent all day today cooking.
I am so grateful for my friends here in Bologna, who have become a sort of family. Dinner was a great time, and we were joined by my roommates (from Italy and Russia, respectively) so we got to share some of Thanksgiving internationally.
My day stared like this, with decorating and preparing dough for rolls:

My candle centerpieces.

Ingredients set out for pies.

Dough getting ready and herbs on the ready.

It even started rising!

After I got setup, my friend Gabrielle, another Fulbrighter who’s visiting from Sicily, got here to hang out. We walked into the city for lunch, and encountered this:

Bologna's Christmas tree getting all ready for the holidays!

I then headed to my friend Christina’s apartment to use her oven, since mine is dysfunctional. She kindly let me bake my rolls and pies in hers instead.

Weird Italian vanilla for peanut butter pie.

Sweet potato pie all ready to go! Italian sweet potatoes are white, hence the green-ish tint of the pie. Don't worry, it baked brown.

Peanut butter pie baking!

Pies (carefully) in hand, Gabrielle and I headed back to start making the rest of dinner. She had a dinner planned with her former study abroad program, but she helped me start the mashed potatoes and turkey. I also made stuffing and brussels sprouts.

Me and Gabrielle, dressed for the occasion.

Everyone got here at 7, ready to eat. And man, did we have a feast. In addition to my food, we had fried artichokes, a salad, cranberry sauce, mulled wine, regular wine, sweet potatoes, and more.

The table is set!

My plate.

The side board, all set up. Look at my rolls!

Seated for dinner.

After dinner, we had some mulled wine, attempted whipped cream (I don’t have a blender, so we were using forks and a milk frother. Suffice to say, it didn’t work.)

The dessert crowd. Complete with prosecco.

What's left of the pies. Thank goodness people took some home.

And then I got to end my day with charades and these guys, my wonderful family:

Sorry it's a bit blurry - it's hard to get everyone in the shot.

So today, I am thankful for improvisation and adaptability, friends in new places, and technology, which brings close that which is far away.
Good night, everyone, and Happy Thanksgiving!


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