Tuesday, January 06, 2015

Christmas 2014

The days in the week leading up to Christmas were particularly stormy.
Our area experienced a very nasty thunderstorm with simultaneous thunder and lightning, torrential rain, some hail and high winds one afternoon two days before Christmas Day. A lightning strike (we think it hit our house or was very very close by) took out the phone system in our valley and, with it, the land line based ADSL internet service.
Our Telco said it could take up to two weeks to get us back 'on air'. In fact it did but there was a lot of network damage all over the area. They had 4 technicians working virtually around the clock to fix everything.
Fortunately we had our mobile (cell) phones as back up for any emergency.
We would have had to frequent the few free WiFi hotspots in town (McDonald's, the library) to establish day to day Internet contact with the outside world but the horrific holiday traffic this time of year makes that trip a real chore so we only managed to just check emails a couple of times in that two week period.
So to our belated Christmas 'report'.
Christmas Day dawned warm and sunny.
The co driver and I headed down to the beach for our usual read and a sit in the sun. Not many people were there at first (too busy opening presents?) but towards mid morning families began to arrive and set up for the day. Lots of new towels, beach tents and boogie boards too. Santa had been busy.

That was the sign for us to head home to prepare our Christmas lunch.
My parents' generation would always have traditional British fare for Christmas. But who wants to slave away in a hot kitchen in the middle of summer and eat food more suitable for cold northern hemisphere winters?
My generation saw the folly of this and things have changed considerably. Seafood and/or BBQs are now more commonplace.

Our menu:
-Fresh oysters on the shell
-Tiger prawns with wasabi and light soy
-Fresh mussels opened in a white wine, tomato and chilli sauce
-BBQ filet steak with twice baked potatoes and steamed brussel sprouts with parmesan
-Sticky date pudding with whipped cream and ice cream

 The wine list:
-Piper Heidsieck NV Brut Champagne
-Margan Hunter Valley Semillon 2012
-Coldstream Hills Yarra Valley Reserve Pinot Noir 2010 (from my secret stash, hence the dusty bottle).
Storms rolled in again in the afternoon but didn't dampen our two person party.
Good food and wine and silly hats and bon bons were the order of the day.

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