A quiet, hot Christmas day

We are in Scottburgh, on the South Coast of South Africa.  It has been hot and humid, and yesterday was no different.

My eldest is spending his Christmas holidays in Kunjata Bay, Mozambique with his buddy Donut.  A whole group of friends went down and it sounds like they are having a ball.  He tells me that the little kids faces are starting to scar from the sun.

My husband and I, and Kyle and his buddy James, spent Christmas day by ourselves.  There were only about 9 gifts under the tree and opening them was quick.  I made bacon and eggs for brunch and in the evening we had a braai (barbecue).  It was tranquil and nice.  No tables laden with food, overeating and long naps to sleep it off.  Last night we took Cinnamon for a stroll on the beach.

Twice we tried having Christmas lunch at a restaurant and it was disastrous.  The service was bad, food took long and it just seemed gloomy, spending Christmas with strangers in a strange place.  I won’t do that soon again.  Just us, at home, is good.

Christmas in the Southern Hemisphere is different from the North.  A white Christmas is an experience.  It looks, tastes and smells different.  I love the way people Christmafy their houses.  Lights and nativity scenes on a wintry, snowy landscape at night is something to behold.  And unlike the North, our December holiday is long with schools closing for about six weeks and most adults taking their annual leave to stream down to the coastal towns of SA.  Generally, decorations are kept down to a Christmas tree and some tinsel around the house.  Nothing fancy.

Turkey is not big here.  Christmas lunches would include gammon, chicken, pork and lamb roasts with potato and other salads.  And brandy pudding, Christmas cake and trifle.  If it is really hot, the meats will be served cold.

Today, the 26th of December, is as yesterday.  Hot.  Later we will make our way down to a beach, hoping that some of the crowds have gone home.

Long, lazy summer days are the hallmark of South African Christmas holidays.


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