Title: A Remembrance of NSA Thanksgivings Past...

Release Date: 2018-03-01

Document Date: 2005-11-22

Description: Staffers remember Thanksgiving meals they had while deployed in Kenya, Somalia, Philippines, and Germany. 

Document: DYNAMIC PAGE -- HIGHEST POSSIBLE CLASSIFICATION IS
TOP SECRET // SI / TK // REL TO USA AUS CAN GBR NZL

(U) A Remembrance of NSA Thanksgivings Past...
FROM: SIGINT Communications
Unknown
Run Date: 11/22/2005

(U) We asked NSA'ers to send us their stories of spending
Thanksgiving in unusual circumstances (see the call for
submissions ). Here's what we learned...
(U) Kenyan Cuisine
(C) Thanksgiving of 1984 was very interesting for me. I got to
spend it TDY in the wilds of Kenya.
(C) I was in the Air Force, stationed here at NSA, working in the
Special Support Activity (SSA). In November 1984, I went TDY to
Kenya, attached to CSG Centcom, with a Special Forces group out
of Ft. Bragg. We spent three weeks in country, living in tents and
working with the Kenyan military.
(U) The commander gave us a "training" day on Thanksgiving and
we did have a feast. But, instead of Turkey, we had goat along with
salad, rice and a few other "goodies." The goats were cooked over
an open fire on spits and actually tasted pretty good. There weren't
any pies or cranberry sauce or even stuffing, but we made the best
of it.
(U) We did have a "Turkey Bowl" football game which gave the
Special Forces guys an opportunity to knock the Air Force guy
around. But all in all, I think I held my own and earned their
respect.
(U) There were many more interesting things that happened during
that TDY, but those will have to wait for another time.
--
(U) Hijacked Turkeys
(U//FOUO) In 1969, I was a young Marine, stationed at the
NAVCOMMSTA at San Miguel in the Phillipines. This was a tiny
remote collection site on the west coast of Luzon. It was about an
hour's drive north of Subic Bay Naval Station in Olongapo. This was
a fairly lawless period, before Marcos' martial law was decreed. (In
the village north of us, communist "Huks" reportedly massacred
the mayor, his family and guests at an outdoor mah-jongg party.)
(U) Being connected to the rest of the world by only a one-lane,
partially paved "national highway," we had nothing from outside
that wasn't trucked in, including holiday food. For Thanksgiving of
1969, the one truckload of frozen turkeys being brought to our
commissary got hijacked on the national highway. I don't
remember what we ate instead, but adobo at baboy (the Philippine
national dish, a vinegar-based stew usually made of "baboy"
(pork)), pansit (a noodle dish) and lumpia (a classic small, fried

SERIES:
(U) Thanksgiving
1. A Remembrance of
NSA Thanksgivings
Past...
2. Part II of
Remembrance of
NSA Thanksgivings
Past...
3. Part III of
Remembrance of
NSA Thanksgivings
Past...

spring roll) were favorites.
(U) Then around Thanksgiving in Mogadishu one year, we had
Somali surf 'n turf: roast camel and shark steaks.
--
(U) Thanksgiving in Bavaria
(U) When my family was stationed in Bad Aibling, Germany
between 1973 and 1977, we lived on base. All government civilian
and military families lived on base in those days. My mom got
together with all the other moms in Building 311 Stairwell C and
planned a Thanksgiving Day feast. Instead of each family cooking
their own Thanksgiving Day dinner, all six families would celebrate
together. There would be two turkeys and everyone's favorite
family dishes.
(U) We celebrated in the "Play Room" on the top floor of the
building. The ping pong table, with extensions, provided seating for
the adults, the kids had their own table. Every family was allowed
to bring a guest. The food table was groaning under the weight of
all the dishes. We had sage and chestnut stuffing and cornbread
stuffing, lumpy mashed potatoes, smooth mashed potatoes, and
sweet potatoes, sweet and sour green beans and sauerkraut. Dad
made up several batches of his egg nog - strictly off limits to the
kids. It was a wonderful way to celebrate the holiday, and so
popular that we continued the tradition every year we were there.
-- Regina Hambleton
(U) Thanks to all who sent in their stories! Watch for more
tomorrow!

"(U//FOUO) SIDtoday articles may not be republished or reposted outside NSANet
without the consent of S0121 (DL sid_comms)."

DYNAMIC PAGE -- HIGHEST POSSIBLE CLASSIFICATION IS
TOP SECRET // SI / TK // REL TO USA AUS CAN GBR NZL
DERIVED FROM: NSA/CSSM 1-52, DATED 08 JAN 2007 DECLASSIFY ON: 20320108

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