Monday, December 26, 2011


So here it is, the day after -- or Boxing Day, as it's called in England. I don't know about you, but I'm exhausted. And I didn't even do that much!

Dave gets all the credit for making our Christmas special. He made an excellent fish dish for Christmas Eve and yesterday roasted two pheasants, with assorted British side dishes like bread sauce and braised cabbage. We even had a Christmas pudding, which in England is an inverted dome of dark, treacly moist cake doused with some kind of booze and set aflame. We didn't make our own -- apparently you've got to make it weeks in advance for it to cure properly -- but we found a satisfactory store-bought pudding at Marks & Spencer.

Dave loves days when we can crack open the wine in the early afternoon and nibble all through the day, culminating in a big dinner. I mostly love them, but I always wind up with an undercurrent of anxiety about eating so much and its effects on my heart and blood vessels. It's the killjoy health writer in me.

I spent the afternoon in a haze of champagne, Skyping with the family and watching "The Ice Storm," one of my favorite movies -- even though it's ultimately sad and not very Christmasy. I did help with the cooking, but I admit I was grudging about it. The kitchen is not a place I enjoy, unless I'm cleaning up.

Dave got me three books -- a book about an unsolved murder with racial overtones in Notting Hill in the '50s, actor Stephen Fry's autobiography and Margaret Thatcher's massive book about her years in power. That Thatcher book will take me ages to read but I bet it's interesting. I disagree with her politics but I think she was an admirable leader. Oh, and Dave got me a pillow covered with images of colorful British postage stamps that I'd admired in a shop. We need some color in our very beige living room, so that's a welcome addition.

Ernie and Ruby enjoyed their holiday, too. They're always a hit on Skype with the families and they got some special treats. They're sound asleep and snoring now, as is Dave. Recovery has commenced!

(Photo: A doorstep in Marylebone, last week.)


  1. Love you, Honey! Happy Boxing Day!

  2. All that running will easily offset a few early afternoons of heavy grazing! Your life sounds just about perfect to me. I can attest that you are a terrific cleaner-uper in the kitchen. That's just as essential as a good cook!

  3. I hope you enjoyed Boxing Day as well. Let me know more about the Thatcher tome and Happy New Year to you both.