It's Thanksgiving in Canada today.
In Qatar, it's Thanksgiving - for Canadians - today.
Canada gets a long weekend for Thanksgiving.
In Qatar, Canadians are already two days into the regular workweek.
In Canada, temps are hovering around 18C today, raining in some parts of the country.
In Qatar, it's about 31C.
In Canada, the leaves have turned, and many branches are now bare, in anticipation of the harsh winter to come.
In Qatar, the trees are beginning to bloom once again, and green is preening in anticipation of the temperate fall and winter months just around the bend.
In Canada, families are reunited, sitting around a turkey dinner with all the trimmings, giving thanks for all the blessings life has bestowed.
In Qatar, our family of three is sitting around a mish-mash wannabe turkey dinner, consisting of a roast chicken prepared hastily after work, gravy, mashed potatoes, carrots bathed in melted butter and maple syrup, stuffing and cranberry sauce from a jar.
For a moment, at the table, I feel like a failure. We should be having a traditional turkey, but work and school and homework and life in general just made that impossible (unless we wanted to dine at midnight).
I'm about to say as much when Kiddo pipes up: ''So what makes Thanksgiving, Maman? Is it the chicken?'' And I answer: ''No, it's the prayer and the thanks.'' And she says: ''So as long as we have chicken and a prayer it's ok?'' And Smilin' Vic and I both answer: ''Yup.'' Her bright, young, hopeful soul often has much greater insight into what counts than our old withered and wizened ones.
And she asks if she can say grace. Of course we say yes. And she blesses our meal with her thanks and her hopes for a beautiful world.
And I say a personal inside prayer of thanks for her beautiful innocence.
And for the chicken. And for the prayer.
Happy Thanksgiving, wherever and on whatever you may be dining tonight.