This is one of the years where the various barbarian tribes that owe allegiance to the de-I Imperium passed on the ritual plundering of de-IHolm and remained on their respective Hemispheres. (An interesting note, with one offspring in the Philippines, one in Amsterdam and, one in the East side of the San Francisco Bay the sun truly never does set on the de-I Imperium - ha, take that British Monarchy!). Hence it was just Wife and I here for the holidays.
A few years ago, this happened and Wife made some comment like, "well since no one will be here, we might as well not do anything (like decorate, celebrate, etc.)." As I did not grow up with Christmas and don't have the 'Christmas go bonkers behavior' hard wired into my persona, I said, "That sounds great." This led to about 2 weeks of trauma (a vast understatement) mostly centered on my not being the person she thought I was and worse. I may not be the sharpest knife in the drawer but you don't have to impale me with pike more than once for me to learn that wasn't the best response to make.
So this year when similar noises were made, I said in no uncertain terms that we were doing the holidays this year. So we decorated and scheduled a number of get togethers with our various friends that were in town. And, odd as it may seem, they all revolved around food and drink.
A couple of days before Christmas we had Wild Bill and Jill over for an Italian meal where we tried four different recipes from Marcella Hazan's Essentials of Italian Cooking (you may remember that I am on a a quest to work my way through that cook book). This was accompanied by the requisite 3 or so different wines with the courses.
Then on Christmas Eve I made a Wife a private meal of crab cocktail with a nice steak, and a cheese course accompanied by a very lovely 2000 Bordeaux.
Christmas Day we were at an open house of one of my business friends and ended up being the last ones there with another couple downing port and raki (a Balkan white lightning type of spirit that my friend's wife had brought back from Albania. Evidently only de-I and one other friend of this guy will drink this stuff. It was made by the Albanian guides mother and was in an unlabeled bottle. Thus far I still have my eyesight).
On the 29th we went out with other friends for drinks and dinner because it was our anniversary! We almost never do anything for our anniversary as you usually are done from the holiday season. That's number 39 anniversary by the way for those who are counting.
Last night we had Gaius Derf and Agent W over and made pizza. This was absolutely the best pizza we have ever made bar none! (I'm planning a couple of foodie only posts with details following this.)
Tonight Wife and I are going to be making fried chicken from scratch using a recipe and technique developed by my father years ago.
And starting January 2 I will be posting on the joys of the lettuce and water diet.