Monthly Archives: December 2021

Christmas 2021

It’s quite cold out, 1 degree C. It’s true fleece weather for Henry and George and as for me, even I wore my hood up today on our walk. The feel is about 6 degrees colder courtesy of that sharp wind blowing around the corners.

I’m listening to a Christmas classic, the Pogues album If I Should Fall from Grace with God and I have to tell you the snarky and sarcastic lyrics suit my mood to a T. Last year we were spending Christmas at a house by the sea with Nel (my fellow anti-Christmas companion) with plenty of jenever, Rummikuib, books and long walks on the beach. Her birthday is the 26th of December and last year we thought it was her 90th. Turns it was her 89th – a slightly awkward moment when you give someone a big gift certificate for a trip to their favorite art museum, dinner and round trip transportation for their 90TH birthday. It’s a good thing we did though as she didn’t see her 90th.

Our plans for 1st Christmas Day this year were to have GG’s immediate family and their kids for dinner. I was so organized I bought all the groceries last weekend and prepared double batches of everything. I had my former interns to dinner on Monday for our annual American Thanksgiving – never mind when it actually falls on the calendar. I was also determined not to wear my anti-holiday cranky pants. However, GG has a horrible, horrible flu. No matter how many tests she does, it’s still just the flu but a bad one. For the sake of everyone, we cancelled our plans.

Yet this left me with vegan tiramisu for 8. Yesterday I delivered the goods to her sister’s house for Christmas dinner. What absolutely shocked me is that both GG and her sister (this is clearly upbringing) asked me if I didn’t want to take out some for ourselves and then give them the rest. I could not wrap my head around bring a dessert to someone with a portion already missing. First I thought GG was crazy or at least badly mannered but then her sister asked me the exact same thing. Clearly I am in the minority 😉 I don’t think I will ever find my way to bringing less than a whole dish to someone. After dinner, different story, doggie bags for everyone but before?? No way!

We won’t eat Christmas dinner tonight since GG can’t taste anything. We’ll try for tomorrow. Fortunately, the Netherlands has first and second Christmas Day. As we are back in a lockdown, there is nothing to do outside the door. This one is planned through 14 January but I imagine it will be extended again. This time many cafes and restaurants are just closing. They are not even trying takeout as it doesn’t bring in enough to cover the costs. I begin to understand why people are going a little nuts.

Mom and I believed in going away for Christmas and if that was not possible, do everything opposite of everyone else. For example, go to the movies while the world is all eating Christmas dinner. When we were kids, she wanted us to open our presents at night instead of in the morning because she was against the whole pyjamas and bedhead look. That doesn’t really work with kids. I don’t think I made her job easier with my searching through the gifts each year and figuring out who got what – and telling my brothers in advance. 😉

I hope you are celebrating today in the way that you like most!