[Apologies for posting this at a later date. Guess punctuality is one bad habit I havent picked up]
If you thought what happened in Christmas Eve was interesting, you have missed the most interesting bit. Midnight. Yes the moment Christ was born. Kate suggested that in the true spirit of the celebration, we might as well join a mid-night mass. I loved the idea. Kates mom joined us though they havent been doing so for a long time now. I havent visited many churches, the ones I have were mostly for marriages. But this was a very small and elegant church. By the time we arrived, the sonorous chimes filled the chilly air and people were quietly moving in. Thanks to the pamphlets and the hymnbook, I could sing along in karaoke pretty well (not particularly distinctively, but still). Kate, despite all the years, sang pretty well. The church singers also did a fine job. The sermon was not particularly interesting. At the stroke of midnight, chimes were sounded again. In the end, we walked towards the altar for blessings from the priest. Later, he did a quick job of finishing the 2 goblets of wine left ;)
Im sure most of us in the house had very little sleep last night. Some of us were too excited wondering what was hidden inside those lovely colourful packing. There were so many of them stashed in so many places. Some had shapes that would easily give away. So they were not taken out. Some of the elderly amongst us were busy being Santa. Tiptoeing close to the Christmas tree he/she was swiftly filling all the stockings. In spite of all this, next to the tree was someone who was dead as a log. Yep, thats me. Totally oblivious, as usual, once the lights go off (even if its back on ;)).
I quickly wake up early morning thinking So early? A Christmas miracle?? After a healthy breakfast, we all gathered in the living room. Presents were to be sorted into piles based on the recipient. I opened my giftbox and I gasped. Thats because in my last minute shopping in Pune I had bought everything available to beat the cold, including caps, extra jacket, thermal wear etc. But they managed to get me what I missed. I was truly surprised to find a beautiful pair of hand gloves and a muffler. There were gifts of every conceivable type: sweets, clothes, durables etc. Everyone meticulous wrote down the names of the sender so that later they could send thank you letters. Check the pictures here
Christmas day is a day of feasting. Im personally a great fan of snacking. Almost every 2 hours, my natural hunger cycle peaks. But Penny kept on bringing mince pies, chocolates and cakes at such regular intervals that I was virtually exhausted. As a nice diversion, we played a lot of traditional games like scrabble and pictionary. Shelly got a nice thousand-piece jigsaw puzzle. We thought it would be a cool time pass. Trust me it was huge.
Cut to Christmas dinner. Of all the delicious treats in the table, obviously, turkey stole the show. Made in 2 different delicious stuffings, it takes hours to be cooked in an oven. Finally, we broke crackers (the harmless Christmas variety) and shared the trivia/jokes we found inside them. We got hooked on to tabletop air-hockey till we were tired of it. Looking back, I’m sure it would one of the best christmas I’ve ever had.