Skip to main content
24 hours in a time of change logo

Thanksgiving Virtual Pop Calls

Washington, DC 20008

Growing up in the 1960s and 1970s in DC's Black community, I experienced the practice of holiday "pop calls," when family and friends that you might not see all year ring the doorbell or knock on the door unannounced, and were greeted with shouts of welcome and laughter. For our "physically distanced" 2020 Thanksgiving, my younger sister put out a zoom invitation for friends and relatives to pop call online. She also scanned photographs from family albums, our childhood birthday parties, and family reunion picnics. The gathering turned into a commemoration of our departed ones -- the ancestors, -- and an opportunity to reconnect with cousins. One cousin in particular, who moved to California 40 years ago, was particularly interested in knowing family history and for his youngest daughter, 22-years old, to know about his family. Several of us noted that it seems the only time we'd seen each other in recent years was at funerals and memorial services. It was a welcome change to gather for the fun of it. Holiday pop calls on zoom may become a new family tradition.

Back to Top