Beloved author and speaker Deb Raney shares a lulu of a story bound to make other Thanksgiving tales pale in comparison, except it isn’t exactly about Thanksgiving~~~
My in-laws moved to California and we were privileged to live in their sprawling 7-bedroom house in my husband’s hometown for eight years while our kids were little. One fall I WON a 20-pound turkey in our small town’s Thanksgiving drawing. Since the bird wouldn’t fit in the freezer of our refrigerator, we put it in the big, empty deep freeze that was in the bowels of the basement. We thought we’d just turn the freezer on for a few days until we were ready to cook the turkey. However, we ended up spending Thanksgiving at my parents’ house, and my mom had already bought a turkey, so after the holidays, I decided I’d thaw out the turkey I won and roast it for a days’ worth of meals for our little family. I unplugged the freezer thinking I’d just go down and retrieve the turkey the next morning when it should be just about ready for the oven.
Welllll… fast forward to the following August. My in-laws are coming for a visit from California and I’m a nervous wreck about hosting them in their OWN house. I start cooking while we wait for them to arrive, except for some reason the flies are just AWFUL. They seem to be coming from the unfinished, dungeon of a basement. We go down to see if one of the kids has left some food down there or something. There is a horrific SMELL coming from the vicinity of…the freezer! The old unplugged freezer. The one that hasn’t been opened since November when I put that turk––oh. my. gosh!! I never did cook that thing.
And of course, just as Ken is opening the freezer to reveal this decaying bird and a dead-body stench that wafted for MILES––who should pull into the driveway but his parents. They couldn’t have been more gracious as they helped us bury the putrid carcass. But that HAS to be my most embarrassing moment EVER. 🙂
DEBORAH RANEY’s first novel, A Vow to Cherish, inspired the World Wide Pictures film of the same title and launched her writing career after 20 happy years as a stay-at-home mom. Since then, her books have won numerous awards including the RITA, National Readers Choice Award, HOLT Medallion, the Carol Award, and have twice been Christy Award finalists. Deb’s 23rd novel released from Howard/Simon & Schuster in May 2013 and she is currently working on a five-book series for Abingdon Press Fiction. Deb enjoys teaching at writers’ conferences across the country. She and her husband, Ken Raney, recently traded small-town life in Kansas ––the setting of many of Deb’s novels––for life in the (relatively) big city of Wichita where they enjoy gardening, antiquing, movies and traveling to visit four children and a growing brood of grandchildren who all live much too far away.
Visit Deb on the Web at www.deborahraney.com.
Newly released Remember to Forget: