It's gone past Boxing Day in New Zealand, but Merry Christmas anyway everyone, I hope you had a lovely day!
The past three days have been delightfully void of cleaning work - the hostel manager temporarily downsizes the amount of cleaning during Christmas and New Year, and gave us a choice of either having Christmas Eve/Christmas/Boxing Day off, or New Year's Eve/New Year's Day/Jan 2nd off. CHRISTMAS PLEASE, I said, and bearing in mind the warning that the morning shift for corridors and stairways on New Year's Day was the worst, I went for morning shift in the kitchen instead. CONGRATULATIONS whoever got the corridors and stairways! Wear a medical mask or something because the amount of after-party sick you will be mopping up will
be astronomical :/
I've been pestering the hostel about getting a proper Christmas event done for the past week, and after a lot of talking, we had everyone who was interested pay us $15 so we could buy everything. The rough count was about 30 people. Yikes. On Christmas Eve morning I roped a few of the lads into coming with me and a friend to the closest supermarket.
"...yeah, we're going in about 10 min - Tom, are you... you're bringing your big backpack?"
"Yes. I thought it'd be useful."
Once we'd bought everything, he packed all 6 chickens into the pack, plus 4 packs of bacon and 2 packs of sausages.
"...will that hold it all?"
"Yeah, I've carried more than 20KG in this before."
What a hero. Later on, he went back to the supermarket and put a crate of cider into his pack for himself, hahaha.
Ughhh, two days of cooking. TWO DAYS. Don't get me wrong, I loved it - the recipe hunting (ILU Guardian!), grabbing friends to do chopping up, tasting - but by the end of it me and Neil were worn out and tempers were thin. We got back from the supermarket on Christmas Eve and did 6 hours of prep, went to a friend's Christmas Eve party, then got up at 6:30am Christmas Day and finished at 2pm. Admittedly we spent at least two hours waiting around for the chickens to cook (which I spent listening to A Festival Of Nine Lessons And Carols, thank god iPlayer works worldwide for BBC radio at least), but bloody hell
. I hardly, if ever, drink, but I cracked open a can of g & t with my lunch and sighed with relief, lollll. No desserts, because what with the main meal, like fuck did we have the time, but an Italian friend made tiramisu. Nom nom nom. We both got a round of applause and everyone said the food was great, hurrah! Yes, yes it was
. The tables were all set out with hats and napkins and Corona beers and limes (lol the priorities of a backpacker Christmas), and we were packed together extremely
tightly. "Christmas! Unexpected intimacy with people you hardly know."
6 roast chickens, basted with herb butter and wrapped in bacon; roast potatoes; sweet potato mash; broccoli (with bacon and without); caulflower cheese (w bacon and w/out); roast carrots and parsnips glazed with honey; meatballs; gravy; bread sauce. Damn, I am not catering for 30 people again in a hurry.
Later on, I fell asleep on a couch with my laptop playing Stopping By Woods
in my ears, then woke up an hour later to find that not only were half the hostel still creatively swearing at the telly because of Mario Kart ("Oh cunting hell! You're getting some ink for that!"), but the manager was bringing out a smaller TV screen so he could bring out his PS3 and play FIFA on it. "It's getting nerdy today!"
Not much else happened - chatted with a few friends, watched some Downton (it's like the Final Destination of period telly - you know the car crash is coming but you can do nothing but walk towards it anyway), rang home for an hour. No presents, but few of us expected any, and really, it was a lovely day as it was.
Today I woke up in the afternoon, went to see if the 160GB iPod Classic had any discounts for Boxing Day (no, and Apple might be phasing out the Classic next year DDD:), read some more of Crimes Against Humanity
, listened to my friend Mark's frustration with his boredom with Auckland now he's not working plus his ongoing pursuit of his cute German workmate, watched Tintin
(really enjoyed it), and finally watched the Doctor Who Christmas special!( The Doctor, The Widow And The WardrobeCollapse )
Oh lol, going to bed now. Tomorrow I'm going to finish writing my cover letter and send it off to a friend who works in HR to look over, then I'm going to watch the rest of Downton S2, download the Christmas Special and watch that, read some more and maybe listen to the epic BBC Radio 4 adaptation of Vasily Grossman's Life And Fate
that they broadcast way back in September. Russia and WWII and Kenneth Branagh and David Tennant!