- I’ve stopped expecting gifts for Christmas; mainly because of my age and also because I’m generally considered ungrateful when I get bad presents from people.
- If I see anybody that owes me money using an Iphone X, please know that I will not be confronting you but just passing by you and picking up stuff for auction.
- It’s not that I don’t appreciate the daily bible verses that people send me on a morning; it’s the outta timing memes and videos that follow that I find slightly disturbing.#bipolarmuch #pickateam #teamjesus #teamdevil
- Trouble walked out the gate this morning while I was driving out. She didn’t look back and I didn’t call out to her to getback inside. I just watched her cut eye as I passed her in the road on my way to the gym. #notrunningbehindadog #irundownnothing #notmyideaofcardio
- A lady cuts in front of an old man near Marli Street this morning. The guy responds : “Yuh driving like yuh face!! Zug Up!!”
- My housekeeper sent me a video from my laundry room of something that looked like rat droppings. I resisted the urge to tell her to pack my stuff up as I would be moving out.
- I’ve been spring cleaning over the last week and I can safely say that every box I’ve touched is now neatly packed and that I’ve thrown NOTHING away.
- How does one choose/decide on paint colors for a wall? The only colors I know for painting walls are Off White, Cream, and Sky Blue. #iminamess #imhorribleatchoosingcolors #fixitrowley
- Yes Ma’am I did hear you fart twice while you were doing your sit-ups in the corner. I assumed your music was on too loud so you think they came out without a sound.
- I see that you are back posting inspirational quotes under random pictures of yourself holding a drink/camera phone. STOP IT!! No one believes you as a motivational speaker!
Category Archives: Holidays
Did you know that there are over 35 ways to prepare and bake a turkey? Did you there are over 650 related recipes? I did not know. Rather I had no clue that to bake a turkey was such a feat requiring super strength, dexterity, skill and tones of patience. If I had known this from before, my mother’s request for me to prepare the Turkey and Ribs for Christmas lunch would have yielded a negative response. (Yeah right, like I could say no to my mother!) It would have resulted in me ordering the stuff before and laying it out nice and neat as if I had prepared it. Did you know that HiLo will prepare a turkey for you once you ask? Who knew!.
BTW, in case you haven’t caught on as yet, I am no cook/chef/wiz in the kitchen. When I tell people that my skill is ordering food, they doubt me. Give me a list of people and I can precisely determine the amount of food you will need from any particular restaurant. Chinese food restaurants are very easy for me. I don’t think it’s a gift but it just developed overtime. I of course ignore those “special needs” idiots who need “leg and thigh only” or “peas must not touch the meat”. They need to be delivered from their neuroses.
Anyway, I digress. I decided that I would bake the turkey myself and of course, being the great chef that I am, I decided to defrost the turkey on Christmas Eve day. I took the turkey out of the fridge around 8am that morning and just left it in a bucket filled with water in the sink while I ran errands and sourced the ribs for Christmas Day.
I didn’t fully understand, well comprehend that a turkey must be fully defrosted before baking otherwise all kinds of health concerns can arise and sundry baking drama. I read all of this on the internet over the days leading up to the baking moment and I just couldn’t understand why anyone would go through so much trouble for a stinking turkey when to cook/bake a chicken one does not go through all this drama.
Anyway, around 4pm, I settled down in front of the computer to decide on a final recipe for this turkey. The day before, a guy had told me that I needed to brine the turkey for like 12 hours and then stuff seasoning under the skin and everything would be ok. I had no idea what “brining” was nor was I leaving a turkey out in any kind of solution for 12 hours to achieve the moisture and taste he described.
Anyway, I settled on the recipe of an Australian Chef who simply took a big stick of butter (garlic I think) and mixed in some herbs and spices (parsley, rosemary, thyme yadda yadda yadda) into the butter and them he proceeded to put this mixture under the skin of the bird and viola, he was done. I liked it! It seemed simple enough and I would have no problem with the seasoning as I had loads of it at home. What I did not have was the type of butter he recommended. I assumed Blue Band and Flora Margarine spread would not do. So off I ran to True Value to get this special butter.
While at True Value, I kept searching for the special butter and kept getting upset as I realised that I might have to drive to Hi-Lo Alyce Glen for greater butter variety. As I was about to leave, I saw a friend named Kurt and I told him of my butter woes. He told me that I was creating work for myself. We walked me over to a section of the grocery where alot of Chinese products were and he handed me a bottle of “Chinese Chicken Marinade” and told me to bathe the turkey in that and placed it in an oven bag and all would be fine.
I was a tad confused. I asked innocently, “Umm why would I put chicken marinade on a turkey?” He stared at me as if I had donkey ears coming out of my head. Turkey is Chicken boy and it is just a sauce! I didn’t question his logic. I took the bottle of marinade and also picked up some oven bags and headed home.
I stared at the turkey for awhile when I got home.
This bugger was big! There were still a few parts of it that were cold and slightly frozen, so I knew I had at least an hour or more before I placed it in the oven. And so I began to work! I got out my seasoning and placed it under the skin of the turkey (Oh I used some lime juice before as brine solution but I think the only effect it had was…well none). I then placed the turkey in a big bowl I had (that was too small for it but it had to work) and began to pour the chicken marinade on it.
After about two or six coats of the marinade on the turkey, I covered it down for 45 minutes to let the marinade soak in. I came back to the turkey a couple times within that 45 minutes just to baste it over and over so that all the juices stayed it.
At 7:25pm, I decided it was time to place the turkey in the oven. I had set the oven a few minutes before to 425 so that it would be ready for the bird. I placed it in a tray and then proceeded to waits for the 3 hours it was estimated on the Butterball label that it would take to bake.
Somewhere in my mind and mixed up in all the info I had devoured, that oven setting of 425 made sense. It was only 40 minutes later when I decided to check the Butterball directions that I saw the setting was actually to be 325! I ran quickly to the oven and changed it. I prayed that the turkey suffered no damage.
Being in the oven bag I realised that I could not keep basting the turkey like I had read so I trusted that this bag would seal in the juices and provide a succulent bird.
At 11:15, I jumped up from in front of my computer and ran to the kitchen as I realised that the bird had been baking beyond the required time. I am ashamed to say that Angry Birds Friends Tournament on Facebook was the reason I lost track of time.
I took it out and well here is the result below:
I got scared immediately. The damn thing was burnt and it didn’t look brown and tasty like the one the Australian chef has taken out of his oven. It looked sick! I didn’t cut it or taste it that night as I feared that I might just chug the entire thing in the dustbin and order KFC chicken the next day! Thank goodness I remembered that Christmas Day is the ONLY day that KFC is closed in Trinidad. So I covered that bugger down and prayed for the best. The Ribs fared much better and I must say everyone was pleased the next day except me.
On cutting the turkey on Christmas Day I discovered that the top part of the breast area was rather dry. The other parts of the turkey were rather moist and tasty but my OCD only concentrated on the dry portion. I was disappointed.
Everything went off well on Christmas Day and I was told by everyone that they will look forward to another succulent bird for Christmas 2013.
I nodded in agreement as I knew that someone will be baking that damn thing for me next time. No headache again.
How was your Christmas?
P.S. I was “Detour” T-shirtless this Christmas. Finally, the Gods have heard my cry!!
So I got a delayed Christmas present today (as the person wasn’t in the country at the time)….
Sigh.. Sometimes it takes just a little to renew your faith in the power of Christmas and good gift-giving…
Since I have promised people not to mention their names in my blogs, i will respect my friend’s privacy.
But Thanks CK
No food was consumed as a result of this gift giving….I may actually exercise in victory.
Ah Christmas! That magical time where we all throttle off to church for Mass to remember the birth of Jesus and then come home to ask the children: “Let’s see what Santa brought you?” Sigh.. umm weren’t you just in church? Why are you lying to people already? Awww…..that magical time where we forget the true meaning of Christmas.
Giving. SHARING. LOVING YOUR FELLOW MAN.
I say this because I always forget the true meaning of the holiday when I receive gifts. I have no problem giving gifts and honestly and I don’t expect gifts in return and nor should anyone feel obligated to give me one (because then it turns gift giving into a chore). But on the off chance I do get one, I turn into this 9-10 year old that can’t wait to open up his presents and be amazed at what he has gotten.
I say 9-10 years old as I think that was the last time I actually got a gift that I went GAGA over…
No I lie., I got a BMX bike at 13 (got banned from using it by Boxing Night) and at 14 I got a Fuji Disc Camera (they don’t exist anymore but I used to love that camera a lot).
As I got older, my presents for Christmas usually came in the region of food. Yes, I see the shock on your faces; I did say FOOD. There is not a hurt caused by a bad present that a nice warm minced pie or warm sweetbread with peanut butter or a couple pastelles can’t soothe away into oblivion.
Sigh if only the hurt of people was easier to get rid of this way.
I make mention to this as I got what one would call presents on Christmas day that had me moving straight for comfort food. I swear sometimes it is as if these people do not know me and haven’t been riddled with my sarcasm enough that they don’t try harder at presents..Sigh…
After you read below, you can only draw one conclusion:
I have been naughty all year and Santa therefore didn’t get me anything.
GIFT ONE –
I am at home on Christmas Eve, trying in vain to wrap presents but I can’t seem to find any of the THREE pairs of scissors that are in my apartment. My attempt at using a ruler and a knife to cut the wrapping paper was a disaster (so too was the use of an envelope opener). In the midst of this chaos I get a call from a friend who asks if I am at home because they want to pass to drop off my Christmas present.
Immediately my heart starts to race as this is an unexpected present and also it will give me the opportunity to give them their present (which was wrapped in the mall because the attendant in the store offered to do it).
I get the gift and hand them theirs and they light up immediately and speed off. I spend all of the journey back upstairs into my apartment trying to decide if I should open it now or on Christmas Day. We know who won.
I opened it and there it was…a disappointing present.
“Another One?”, I thought to myself.
My 10 year old self stood there crushed, hurt, wounded to the core, as I looked at the present which basically said that this person took no time or effort to even think about getting me something.
At this point you must say that I am ungrateful. Well I am!! And let me tell you why.
I get a call at 12:30am Christmas Morning thanking me for my present (I will not disclose what it is because getting someone a PUMA laptop bag is not important at all and only shows how shallow I am). They then asked what I thought of my present. I was silent for a bit and then I uttered:
The Wallet? Oh It’s nice. It’s just like the one you gave me LAST YEAR! Only this time you took it out the box that it came in!!!
There was silence on the phone and I felt an apology coming and I halted it by stating that I was wrong in being so ungrateful. I thanked them for the gift and told them that I had no right to be so sarcastic. I just got a “Merry Christmas Steffy” and the line went dead.
Yes, YES I know…There is a Special Place in Hell for me!
COMFORT FOOD: I immediately took at some sweetbread and Smuckers Peanut Butter (All Natural) and warmed it up. Eating two slices of the bread so early in the morning wasn’t wise but it dulled the pain tremendously
My Mother means well and she will always be unable to do any wrong in my mind. She has a heart of gold and every child in the neighbourhood loves her to death and the presents they get. Unfortunately, her children seem to get neglected as a result. I guess it must be easier to buy toys for kids than stuff for adults (Yeah I’m gonna stick with that answer).
I arrive at my mom’s house around 10:30am Christmas Morning with belly in hand and 8 Tupperware containers in the car (3 are allocated to this house but that can always change). We begin breakfast and so I am stuffing my mouth with souse, ham sandwiches, beef pastelles, some sorrel, and grapes as far as the eye can see. All is well and right with the world. I am full and so my chakra is centred and neutralised.
I gave everyone in the house their presents and there were smiles all around. My mom turns to me and says that she has been really busy and so she didn’t get chance to wrap my present, then she reaches into a black bag and says:
Mom: Which Plaid Shirt do you like? I bought one for you and one for your brother! You wear plaid right?
My Sister: I told you he doesn’t wear plaid.
(SILENCE – TV playing in background people staring at me waiting for a response).
Mom: Stefan? Say Something!
Me: (I swallow) I like the one on the left
Mom: Yuh know that is the one I actually said you would like.
I grin and give her a hug.
My sister looks at me and giggles. I walk to the back bedroom without even touching the shirt and sit on the edge of the bed. I keep wondering why after all these years does it still phase me that my mother insists on shopping at DETOUR! At least it’s not a t-shirt but a XXL plaid shirt. Oh JOY!!!
I sit and wonder what I have done wrong as only a week ago I gave my mom two garbage bags full of old clothing for her to give away to charity. Did she not look through the items? Did it not occur to her what my taste in clothing would be? Did she not see presents from previous years in the garbage bag? I guess not!
COMFORT FOOD: So I sit at the edge of the bed and inhale three pastelles and a ham sandwich. One would NEVER have guessed that I had eaten just a mere 15 -20 minutes before. I had a short nap right after because there was no way my body was going to digest all that food with me conscious and watching television or something.
I also visited my father later on the evening, only to be questioned when was I going to lose all that weight. I smiled and ask politely where the roast beef was being stored and that I had brought a special container for the callaloo. I was then reminded that my younger brother goes to the gym every afternoon like clockwork and is look slim and trim! Did you say you had pastelles for me too?
These stories, my friends, represent the results of my sins for the entire year. Apparently, I did no good this year and therefore my penance is bad gifts. Getting no gifts doesn’t hurt at all, as my expectation is geared towards that reality. But to lull me into a false sense of wonder by telling me I have a gift and then laying one on me that showed you barely thought of me for all of two minutes?.. Well that crap kinda hurts…
How come I can’t get use to disappointment after all these years?
As I write this, I am eating grapes. I am all worn out of pastelles and my bread intake has been in excess of the legal fat boy limit. The 8 Tupperware containers are still full of food as I haven’t eaten at home since Christmas Eve and I don’t expect to heat anything up until probably sometime in January.
Whatever the result, I’ll be fine.
Oh I did get some nice presents otherwise from sources that came out of the blue and one of these is really cool.
The best gift however, came from my God Daughter, Kai, who hugged me tightly after she received her gifts and told me, in the sweetest two year old voice ever , that she loved me. I melted like butter after that. There was no need for comfort food at that point.
I was full!!
How was your Christmas?
I may have told this story before but every year around this time I am cursed with the recurring memory of my mother shouting to me one Christmas Eve night in 1986:
“Yuh see YOU! You are a SELFISH child! Just Selfish and Ungrateful!”
A speech was given after this introduction but like every Charlie Brown Christmas Special all I heard after that was
Mwah Mwah Mwah Mwah Mwah…..Nothing else stuck!
I won’t go into the reasons she called me selfish except to say that I was not appreciative of the gift I had received that Christmas.
Move forward to 2011 and I just don’t bother with Christmas nor do I even expect gifts from anyone at all.
Every year, I get the same excuses that I get for my birthday:
You too hard to shop for and me aint have no setta money to be buying up stuff for all kinda people
My response: So I am now all kinda people? Nice!
I just don’t bother anymore.
Apparently it is ok for everyone to be selfish but if I demand attention, I am the one that is not understanding or appreciative of people…LOL, and people wonder why I live alone and love it!!!!
Anyway, I realise that every year people become more and more selfish around Christmas time but in their eyes, they just believe that its their of enjoying the Christmas Season to the Max.
I had the privilege of being a part of a Children’s Christmas Party put on by the Unit my office falls under. We went to Pt Cumana Primary Government School on Saturday 10th December and threw them a Christmas Party. It was fun (well as much fun as a room full of screaming children can be).
During the organising process, the team leader for the party suggested that we get extra gifts for the event, just in case other children come along to the party. I quickly raised my hand and said that it should not be done as we need to stop feeding the “Gimme Gimme” mentality from an early age. My comment was shut down as they thought I should grow a heart before speaking about children like that.
In my wisdom I couldn’t understand how someone who doesn’t go to the school could come to a party they weren’t invited to and expect a gift. It boggled my mind.
I am glad no one took me on. Cut to the day of the party and with the arrival of Santa, you saw kids with eyes beaming and all smiles. As each name was called, you saw some kids light up and others had worried looks on their faces as if they believed their names would not be called. I actually had to comfort a couple kids when I saw their faces morphing into wailing banshees…
That day every kid got a present and all were happy. It was a weird feeling to see the happiness in their faces. Even the ones that didn’t belong to the school got a present and didn’t care. Once they heard their names, joy was in their hearts. I was touched.
I would ignore the fact that one kid on seeing that he received a book and some comics, threw it into a corner and sucked his teeth (He was 14 and in Standard 4). And another dropped her present somewhere and went to maco other kids presents and on returning could not find her. She walked up to Santa and told him that she lost her present and so she needed another one to go home with. Sigh… Kids say the darndest things..
There was also the bully who kept pushing kids in the bouncy castle and taking their stuff while they were eating it, but on the sight of Santa, he started to scream and ran to his mother for protection.
Anyway I mentioned this event because when we got back to work on Monday, our Group Head sent out an email congratulating the two organisers of the event and everyone who took part. However, only the two organisers names were mentioned and a group of people started to complain that they worked so hard and deserved the recognition. Then one let it slip that they only attended the event so that on their Performance Appraisal Report they would have done some Community work.
I was livid! I was on my feet for over 5 hours taking pictures of these low levels demons that kept either pulling at my camera or insisting that I do mini photoshoots with them and their friends.
I was accused of not being a very good photographer; his daddy is better. (Steups!!) One even tapped me on my bottom and told me that it real big and she walked away laughing hard. (Alas I could not express my weight issues to the child, she would not understand, but given the size of her mother, I knew karma would return to her later on). Anyway, my point is that I did this because I wanted to. I didn’t do it for accolades or for my appraisal form; I did it because I like helping out.
I never realised is that this is the common mood of people around Christmas time, they are just super-self serving bastards! To appease the disgruntled masses, my immediate boss gave instructions to issue a free Movietowne Ticket pass to each of the people that helped out on the day. I refused mine on the account that I am always there anyway and like the “opium of the masses dictates” – My reward is in heaven.
On another note, A friend had told me about a co-worker whose daughter had a hole in her heart and that the father was busy trying to raise money for an operation. My friend had put forward an idea to the person in charge of the Christmas party that they take $50 out of their $225 per person allocation for the party and give it to help the guy with his funding raising exercise. The organiser loved the idea but when she put it to other staff members they flatly rejected it saying that the organisation doesn’t give them much and so they want a good party.
Really? That was the response?
Oh yes it was. So ignore the fact that most people who attend Christmas functions don’t eat much nor do they drink a lot either (It is just one or two that drink til they are drunk and embarrass everyone else); they however need to see the food go to waste to prove that they had a good time.
This however doesn’t apply to me as no matter where I am I make friends with the caterers as I am a single man and a few pastelles, samosas, quiches with ham and turkey slices can go along way in preventing me from cooking on a daily basis.
I have therefore given up on the goodness of man and their ability to do the right thing. I was once told by someone that the magic of Christmas means they can’t lie to people on Christmas day. Yeah right! So for the other 364 days it’s ok?
Where has the love gone?
Where is the true meaning of Christmas?
Did we ever know the TRUE meaning of Christmas?
Were we always pretending?
Every year, I get the nice emails/text messages from family members who will remain nameless and it always talks about what they want. I laugh at each of them because they always start off saying that they don’t need much for Christmas and then the list goes on about alternative gift suggestions should I not be able to get the item that they really want!
In the end, I still get them something though and it is mainly because my mother told me 25 years ago that I was SELFISH and UNGRATEFUL!
I know some of you remember me complaining about getting Detour T-shirts for Christmas from my Mom and therefore think that I should be appreciative, well my basic problem with the gift is that there was no thought put into it. She walked into a Detour outlet, saw aSaleonJerseys, (probably 3 for $100/150) and bought them and proceeded to give one to me, one to my brother and they other to my step dad. That required no thought at all. Was I not even deserving of someone actually shopping around and coming up with a present for me alone? Somehow more time is devoted to children and gift giving than on adults.
Please remember the song said: To kids from 1 to 92 (and not 19 as I previously thought)…
So here am I, stuck feeling guilty all this time while everyone else is…well…you know how you are……
So no matter where you are or what you believe:
Shub Naya Varsh
Buone Feste Natalizie
I was having lunch with my co-workers and related a story to them in which (when I was much younger – teens) someone made me get into trouble when they were the seriously guilty party and I had nothing to do with it. I was just nearby and since the act of deviousness was kinda right up my alley, everyone assumed it was me.( Steups as if i would ever commit the same crime in the same general area more than once).
To cover their ass, they related a fake story to my father and resulted in me being “banned” from going out and I was basically under house arrest and had to report in to my grandmother at various intervals. Being locked up during July/August vacation is not a pleasant experience.
Anyway, I confronted the person and they looked and me and grinned and said:
“So. Wah you could do bout it?”
“If yuh touch meh yuh getting into more trouble”
I stared at them with the intensity of a fat boy looking at a dessert cart, but i knew my hands were tied. Instead i just uttered the words..
“Badjohn must sleep”
“Eh? wah yuh mean by dat?”
I repeated my phrase: “Badjohn must sleep”
He steupsed at me and walked off.
I explained to my colleagues that it made no point to fight with the individual as I would be seen as a bully and would be told that I should know better.
Instead of opting for the pugilistic approach, I did the following:
(NOTE: Names, location and characters have been changed going forward to protect the guilty and the clueless)
Day One: Stared at them whenever possible with no expression on my face. (P.S. it’s more intimidating at night)
Day Two: Repeat action from Day One but this time I left a present of stinging nettle leaves under their bed sheets
Day Three: Returned to normal. Interact as if nothing has happened. When asked about stinging nettle I looked puzzled as there is no way I could leave my house and end up by someone else.
Day Four to Seven: All is normal. Laughter abounds. All appears to be forgiven. No further attacks occur.
Day TEN: Ban is lifted due to EXTREMELY good behaviour.
Now that my freedom had returned and I therefore had all the time in the world to execute my plan on the “clueless”.
I slept over by the offender and knowing their sleeping habits, concocted a sugar water solution to execute my plan.
While they slept I sprinkleddrops of sugar water all over visible aprts of their body (hands, legs, arms and face). Unaware of what was going on, they slept comfortably. I returned home to my bed that night citing my need to sleep with a fan (lie).
I awoke the next day to hear my grandmother yapping int he kitchen aobut strange dots and marks on my victim’s skin and that thier mother had rushed them to the hospital just in case they were having an allergic reaction.
Alas, nothing was wrong and all that happened is that the doctor gave them and ointment for the skin and their mother decided to give them a “purge” to help cleanse their system.
I smiled. I was happy.
Now I ask you, did I do anything wrong?
My colleagues heard the story and I was called “evil” and “vindictive”.
Do you think I warrant such a critique?
After all, no one was hurt, no violence occurred and everyone praised me for my mature handling of the situation. I was accused of a crime I didn’t commit and like Dr Richard Kimble, I had to deal with the situation in my own way.
I had a good Christmas Day. It wasn’t at all what I expected and I was really happy about it. My initial feeling about Christmas Day was not a nice one. My sister had announced to me a week before the day that they were coming to my apartment to celebrate Christmas. Huh? What? When? Who? Why? I didn’t understand how a decision to come to MY apartment could be made without me being consulted. Then again, my mother knew that I wouldn’t object to the decision once it had been made. I would hem and haw but still allow the event to take place.
What followed afterwards was a series of reminders being sent to me by my mother on:
1. The Guest List
2. The Lunch Menu
3. Dessert Menu
I instructed everyone that I would be providing dessert, so everything else had to come from them. There was no objection. (Hmm how strange!) I also informed my mother that I would not be picking up any relatives to transport them to my apartment since I would be too busy preparing for everyone’s arrival. No objection either. (Hmm something is up)
It has been years that my mother has been threatening me with spending Christmas Day at my apartment but somehow it never seems to materialize. Now, all events leading up to the big day seemed to have been planned and I had absolutely no excuse for not being ready for the day.
Christmas Eve Afternoon met me at my apartment wrapping gifts (well not really wrapping but placing them in small bags with kite paper being used to cover the item. I swear this is the best thing ever thought up to avoid wrapping presents). I got a call around 5pm from my mom asking if I had drinking glasses for everyone. I gulped. No I didn’t. Despite being an adult, I owned very little drinking glasses (two actually) since I NEVER entertained at my apartment. My apartment has loads of plastic cups (most tastefully done). I am clumsy, and I knock things down constantly. In my first apartment I had bought myself a set of nine glasses. They all broke, I either dropped them while taking them out of the closet or kicked one or two of them across the living room because I forgot where I had placed them after meal or after entertaining guests in the past. After these broke, and I spent hours looking for the missing pieces, I vowed to stop entertaining and to only use plastic cups. It had worked so far.
Anyway I digress, I panicked. I told her that I didn’t own much glasses and that I had no intention of going into a mall at this late hour to be stuck in traffic etc. She agreed on it and promised to buy me some for Christmas. (Disaster averted). She then informed me that seven people will be having lunch with me on Christmas Day.
“SEVEN? Seven? People…who pickney allyuh bringing?”
“Oh, your aunt wants to come along and your sister and your brother are bringing their respective people.”
“Steups,, they don’t have families to harass? And…ummmm.. one more person is missing.
“Well my old school friend is in the country for Christmas and I invited her as well”
“Stef…..Stefan you still there?”
Yes, I am here. Ok. It’s fine but I did not buy any presents for those extra people “
“ Ha ha ha ha Ok Stefan it’s fine.”
There was mild panic within me. That the number was way too much for my apartment to hold and for me to control. I suddenly realized that people would be wandering around (especially my aunt) and even though I have nothing to hide in my apartment, there are some things that I just don’t want people touching.
Then another revelation came: I would have to let people use the bathroom in my bedroom as well. Given the number of people coming and the amount of drinks I had on ice. ..sigh… that meant keeping a watchful eye on the snoopers. “THIS is too much work”, I thought to myself
I thank my lucky stars that my housekeeper had been in my apartment days before, so it was very presentable for general public viewing. I just had to pack my magazines neatly and keep my CD collection locked away in my wardrobe, just in case one of my siblings’ significant others wanted to touch them, soil them or (gulp) have me burn them a copy of something.
So much needed to be done now. I had to make a list. Would there be enough time? Is it too late to get a flight out of the country? Why don’t I watch Home& Garden, they prepare you for this type of thing!!! It was official. I felt like an old woman trying to hide her best china from the invading grandchildren.
I went to bed tried that night and I still knew I had lots of stuff to do. The list in my mind however, was simple one and it didn’t occur that I should’ve made a last minute run to a supermarket. Oh wait, I did at 7pm and found 3 of the 4 in the area closed and the other one causing traffic for a mile. Somehow in my mind, I thought that supermarkets would open on Christmas Day and that I would get the stuff then.
I jumped out of sleep Christmas morning when I realized that eight people were going to be eating at my house and I didn’t have enough knives and forks for the event. I have a nice blue handled utensil set. It contains 4 of everything. This of course does nothing since I need utensils for 4 extra people. I rushed out of my house.
Nowhere is open. The road is clear. There is not even a stray dog or vagrant in sight. I am alone on the road except for a few cars and three men eating doubles in St. James. I spot a Pharmacy and it was open but this yields no assistance as they don’t have utensils. I called a friend in desperation for assistance and I was grateful that she was going by her parents for lunch so I borrowed her utensils for the event. I apologized so much for being that neighbour that had to borrow stuff at this last minute. She just laughed at my silliness as she called it.
I was relieved. Everything else was just about ready , I now had the extra knives and forks and all would be fine. While I am driving back home, my friend Matthew calls me from Geneva to wish me Merry Christmas, and I inform him on what my day is going to look like. I am boasting that I am fully prepared now. He then puts his friend Yinca on and then she asked me one something simple question: “do you have enough utensils for dessert as well?”. My car slowed to a crawl at this point, as all was lost. A simple thing like spoons for ice cream and cake went ignored. I thanked her for her help but at this point, I was going to use what I had and make it do.
I got back to the house and the race began. I set up the dining room table, put fruit into a nice bowl, brought out the cakes so that they would be room temperature when lunch was over and placed utensils and the like all strategically around the table. Too bad the plates did not match with anything. No biggie. I am a bachelor…this is expected of me.
My mom calls at 11am to announce that lunch will be minus 3 persons. No aunt or significant others.(YES!!! Jesus loves me, my CDs are safe!! Malicious macos reduced tenfold). I was relaxed now and ready for their arrival.
They came at 12:30pm and everything moved really smoothly. We took dishes out of the car and I set them up on the table. Some things needed to be heated and that was done and we were on our way to lunch an hour later.
Lunch passed without incident and everyone felt relaxed in my apartment. My mother’s friend kept munching on the almonds I put out and even though she had a hearty meal, she took up the bowl of almonds and sat in front of my television set only to fall asleep in 5 minutes.
Gifts were exchanged and conversations throughout the day were extremely lively and at one point in time there was not a dry eye in the apartment as I related to them my paranoia over preparing for today. My mother doesn’t know where I get this streak from? Hmmm strange how she can’t remember BEATING it into me as I was growing up.
Dessert came much later and consisted of two types of cake, (a Bunt Cake and Fruit Cake) along with ice cream. Everyone was satisfied and well filled up.
I kept monitoring the wares in the sink as I am not a fan of washing them, but all seemed under control. When they decided to leave around 6pm, my mother wanted to leave every dish, container and bowl she had brought filled with food for me to eat for the next two months. I packed some of it away in my containers and got them to take the rest home. It was a bit of a fight but I managed to convince her that I would just come up home for more food should I run out. (Yeah Right, I made sure I had enough stuffing to last me for a long time, no need to go for replenishment).
All in all a good day was had by all and everyone complemented me on making them feel relaxed in my apartment. It was certainly my pleasure.
Oh I can’t find my bowl with the almonds anywhere……….