After going to the local casino in San Ignacio for their Thursday Karoke night, my friend Casey and I decided it would be awesome to host a Thanksgiving dinner in San Ignacio. We could have a big early dinner at my house or the office and then go to the casino for some singing, dancing fun. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to get enough people to commit to coming, so I invited myself to my friend Melissa’s Thanksgiving in her site in Villa Florida. Villa Florida is on a river and Melissa had already arranged to have her dinner at a hotel with a pool. River/Pool is a very fair exchange for Karoke.
Casey made garlic potatoes, Julia made hummus, and I made apple pie that morning, caught one of the only double decker buses (with ac!) that will actually stop in San Ignacio without charging the full price all of the way to the capital, even if you want to get off sooner. Amazingly they charged Casey and me the normal price (it was such a nice bus they could have charged up to 50% more), and they completely forgot to charge Julia at all.
We were all dressed up, so there was a lot of rubber necking going on while we waited at the bus stop, including 5-6 of the local police officers piled into their truck cruising around, and a set of guys in a truck who let their vehicle roll back 4 car lengths so their car would be waiting in front of us instead of at the stoplight they were at.
We got to Villa Floriday around 3, having only picked at food around my house and finishing off the hamburgers I made the night before so we were getting hungry. We found out dinner wasn’t going to happen until about 7pm, so after a quick dip in the pool we heated up some pita bread and broke open some Lays and went to town on the hummus. I have to say, it’s the best batch I’ve helped make. I think I might just have to stop making it because I don’t think I’ll be able to top it.
In true Hora Paraguaya fashion, the locals didn’t start arriving for dinner until 9-10pm, after Melissa messaged them tell them to get to the hotel because the turkey was done and we were ready to eat. Potluck style dinners aren’t really the norm, the host usually provides everything. But Melissa’s friends did a good job of bringing additional dishes and we had a nice assortment of different meat dishes, potato salad, empanadas, etc.
Julia, Casey and I had eaten so much hummus that we could hardly take advantage of the main course. But we did our best. Julia made a serious dent in the sausage plate in front of her, like there was an actual divot in the cut sausage pile. Admittedly it was really good.
Before we cut the turkey, we each went around the table saying what we were thankful for, a new tradition for the locals, who were very hesitant at first, especially the few stragglers that came after the main group had gone and started eating. But Melissa held firm and told them they couldn’t eat until they shared.
I was surprised how some of the guests actually seemed ot like the hummus we made. It had a really strong flavor, which usually Paraguayans don’t like. The potatoes didn’t go over real well since we put a bunch of pepper and garlic. The apple pie, which was very tart and cinnamon, didn’t go over very well either, since they prefer their desserts very sweet and sugary. Not that Julia, Casey, and I were at all perturbed by this. Casey ate the last half piece for breakfast the next morning, most of it was polished off while waiting for the bus that evening.
We left around 11pm to catch a bus back to San Ignacio, got charged the correct price again! Amazing! Got back into San Ignacio a little after midnight and started walking the 15minutes back to my house. As we did a carful of guys offered us a ride, we declined, and declined, and declined again. They even offered to get out of their car and walk with us. No thanks gents. They eventually got the message and went away. Like I said ,we were looking pretty fancy, even if we felt like whales.