The best-laid plans o' mice an' men
Gang aft a-gley,
An' lea'e us nought but grief an' pain
For promised joy.
"To a Mouse" by Scottish poet Robert Burns (1759-1796)
Actually no grief or pain, but a bit of panic and uncertainty before some quick thinking and ingenuity by my sons saved the day/turkey. The brining had gone beautifully--not complicated or messy or any of what I anticipated. I had planned to put in the turkey at 2:00 p.m., allow 3 hours for cooking an 18 lb. bird and a half hour of "resting" the turkey before carving and the meal to begin around 6:00 p.m. At 1:45 I turned on the oven and the pre-heating began. At 2:00 the bird was roasting. Thirty minutes later when I went to reduce the heat and cover the turkey, I was surprised that the oven--and the turkey--still felt cool. I reset the pre-heat and it came right on but afterwards the oven once again failed to work. I panicked and called a family meeting, scenes from the movie "Pieces of April" flashing through my mind. I had not planned an "alternate destination" for my turkey. My sons asked if our grill had enough gas for us to grill the turkey. I had my doubts but the Webber came through. With a little monitoring of the temperature gauge and an hourly check on the turkey-embedded thermometer, we managed a moist golden turkey, carved and served, at 7:30 p.m. just one and a half hours and three bottles of wine beyond what I had planned.
We all enjoyed conversation, celebrating togetherness and checking out our new gifts with the final result of achieving "promised joy."