Read, Write, Run, Roam

Thanksgiving: American Slava

After my grumpy post yesterday, and my three hours of pre-Thanksgiving cooking today, I realized: Thanksgiving is basically American slava.

A slava is the celebration of a Serbian family’s patron saint. I’ve been told that the family saint is selected according to the proximity of a Saint’s celebration to the date that the Serbian family accepted the Orthodox religion. That’s the (sort of) official version.

Unofficially, a slava is a crazy day–or two–of non-stop eating, visitors, music, and alcohol.

And this is just for uncle Pedja

Today, Serbians are celebrating the slava of St. Michael. So while I do a little prep work for tomorrow’s meal, I’m channeling the energy of Serbian housewives who are overseeing the spit roast of at least one animal, inviting a priest over to bless the bread, serving sweets before and after the meal, planning to feed anywhere from 30-80 people, bringing the extra stash of rakija into the house, and fortifying chairs because at some point, people will start dancing on them.

So…no complaints here. (Especially since my stash of rakija is conveniently close to the kitchen.) Happy Thanksgiving and Srecna Slava, everyone!


3 responses

  1. My first Slava as a host was last year and this year will be my second one! And I love it. Cant wait!! Never been religious but this tradition I celebrate with my Muž so it’s a new life and new me! I’m glad that my Slava is during “post” so no meat!!But lots of good Serbian wine from Fruška Gora and lots of domaća rakija

    November 22, 2012 at 6:50 am

  2. Great Read! I am gonna add a link to this on my post today. Happy Thanksgiving.

    November 22, 2012 at 8:08 am

  3. Juanita Shaffer

    You are so funny. I just happened to check what time it was in Belgrade and I saw your blog. I had a hard time controlling my laughter. I did not want to wake up The boss- my 12 lb chihuahua-lol. I had a wonderful friend when I was in college that was from Belgrade and I would often wondered how different life was here for him. Or anyone that came to the US for that matter! Well- I am going back to catch up on your blogs. Thank You for the insight….you definitely have a new follower.

    January 14, 2013 at 4:41 am

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