The last of the turkey was consumed tonight.  Considering I bought such a (comparitively) small bird this year, I’m surprised it lasted as long as it did.

Hot turkey sandwiches were the appropriate finishing meal.  Unfortunately, I forgot the cranberry sauce.

Oh well…

I just had a memory of Turkey Dinner when I was in Uncle Sam’s Yacht Club.  Christmas Day, 1972… Gulf of Tonkin.

I was a baker and five of us made something like 700 pies, while the cooks in the galley cooked off something like 500 BRT turkeys. (BRT=Boned, Rolled, and Tied.)  Mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, green beans, dressing… The forward bakeshop made 5000 or so dinner rolls.  Gourmet, it was not.

So after baking all those damned pies, I got to serve them, as well.  I don’t remember who sent the Santa outfit to me – one of my sister’s probably – but there I was dressed as a pretty lame Santa in a flannel Santa outfit serving those thousands of slices of pie.

The ice mold on the counter there was also a thing to behold. My best buddy Tim – who later became my brother-in-law – and I filled up a small mixing bowl with water and floated plastic holly, tinsel, and lord knows whatever other holiday-type stuff one could find while floating off the coast of Viet Nam.  Into the freezer it went, and we had instant holiday ice sculpture.  They loved it.

The only thing I really remember well – 36 years after the fact – is just how uncomfortable and hot I was.  I think I actually weighed about 150 pounds in that picture and had tons of padding on me. (I wouldn’t need the padding, today!)  The galley and the bakeshops were always incredibly hot to begin with – and there I was dressed in layers and layers.

And how about those Navy-Issue glasses?!?  What a stud.