donderdag 25 december 2008


Been feeling unusually Christmas-y this year...maybe it's due to being outside America - in the States, you're bombarded with consumerism, and the newspapers and newscasts seem to think it's *important* to report how retailers are doing - as if Walmart's profit margin is the determining factor as to whether this is a good Christmas or not!! I watched Fox News last week and a "reporter" actually said something like "we'll know next week whether Walmart's Christmas wishes will come true or not" - it's Christmas wish of selling crap to people who are in a recession so it's top execs can take home billion dollar bonuses????? Anyhow, while there is of course consumerism in the Netherlands, it's much more mellow - and I've been surprised (and relieved) how unusually friendly and upbeat people in shops are. Someone actually said "Sorry!" when almost ramming their shopping cart into me at Albert Heijn - this is unheard of!!!! Normally when I've been in the US, I come back to NL after Christmas and am immediately disgusted by the rude and impolite behaviour of people, but it seems different this year - maybe the coming recession is in fact humbling people?? For the first time, we got a Christmas tree and decided to make a turkey! There's only 2 of us (plus the animals), so we didn't need a big one, but there was a misunderstanding at the butcher. They asked me if I wanted to 2.5-3 pound turkey.....they said "pound" so I assumed they had heard my American accent and were kindly converting from metric for me, even though in truth, I have lived here so long I have completely forgotten non-metric measurements and don't have a clue how warm or cold 70 degrees fahrenheit is anymore. Anyway, I show up at the butcher and the turkey was in fact 3 KILOS! A big bird!! This will be the first attempt at cooking a turkey, so it will indeed be interesting - hope it works out. I imagine there will be quite a few turkey sandwiches in our future (which will taste great on maisbrood!). On the downside, my Dad has been quite ill lately and I just discovered my cousin, who was strangely born the exact same day and year I was, has breast cancer - all the bad things in my family seem to happen around Christmas time (among other things, another cousin died two days before Christmas back in the 80s), so I do get a bit nervous this time of year. anyhow, happy holidays - whatever it is you celebrate, be it Hannukah, Kwanza, Christmas, or just enjoying a few days off :-)

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