Midwinter Christmas at Abbey!
Every year, Abbey College has a tradition- celebrating Midwinter Christmas in July! Abbey holds special dinners monthly/bimonthly, where all the residents get together for a fun night of food and entertainment. There are typically themes to the dinners and new residents are mentioned, those who submitted their thesis are congratulated, and those who left are wished luck. Last night was my first special dinner and it was great! When I walked into the dinning room, little Christmas trees lined the tablecloth lined tables. Garland was hung. There was even a table for the Secret Santa gifts we got each other. It certainly looked like Christmas! I sat with some of my favorite people at Abbey. There was free wine and beer with bread and tomato soup for appetizers. Dinner was potatoes, a mixed vegetable pot, cauliflower and broccoli, ham, and stuffed turkey. It was delicious! The only thing missing were the Yorkshire puddings! A local priest talked briefly about the conflict NZs (and half of the world) have with Christmas being in summer. The identity crisis if you will of carols, decorations, movies, and the general acceptance of Christmas requiring snow and ice and cold weather. For me, I still cannot picture it otherwise, but I suppose I will have to get used to it!
My Secret Santa was lovely and got me a stuffed frog, soap, and a hair towel. I really needed something else to snuggle with, a friend for my lonely penguin. It was really thoughtful. My gift recipient loved there’s too- a leather notebook and pen. He found out who I was (very sneaky!). It was a really nice idea, having that gift exchange. Afterwards, tables were moved and music was played. Many people danced (I did not), or chatted. It was just an easy going, relaxing night with friends.