The Day Before Christmas

DSC_0849It was a wet, gloomy day and we decided to go to the cinema. Eggs were poached and eaten with crispy bacon and hot buttered toast. We drank pots of black tea and called a cab. The excellent Cabbee App on the smart phone presents you with bids from taxi firms for your chosen journey and we picked the best offer. The journey to the Odeon at Swiss Cottage took twenty mts. and cost eleven pounds. The young cabbie was chatty all the way and was keen to point out good restaurants, shops and the new MTV offices.

DSC_0840DSC_0841They had cancelled the 11.40 Life of Pi and were apologetic and gave us free tickets for the 1.20 screening. We walked to Primrose Hill past the beautiful houses of beautiful people and had very good coffee and cakes at an Italian café and looked at London spread below us in the gathering gloom. It was beginning to rain.

Back at the Odeon, Life of Pi in 3D held me spellbound. We munched salt and sweet popcorn and sipped coke from a big tub. It was the first time I had been to the cinema in a quarter of a century and enjoyed every minute of it!

The 31 bus took us to Camden Town and another, to Green Lane. The streets were full of last minute shoppers desperate for last minute sprouts and mince pies.




Nadja celebrates Christmas the German way and opens Christmas presents at sunset on Christmas Eve. At first there were no presents under the tree in the lounge and the children looked worried. We were led upstairs for Pierre-Gimonnet’s excellent Rose de Blancs and delicious homemade biscuits with pecan nuts, and when we came down again, the space under the Tree was packed with parcels wrapped in shiny ribbons. The girls clapped and laughed and rolled on the floor and everybody was happy. My parcel contained excellent Jamaican coffee and Ottolenghi’s latest cookery book- Jerusalem. I don’t cook but love reading cookery books! We went next door for supper.


We sipped Mount Horrocks Semillon, chilled and oaky and ate piles of German sausage, sauerkraut, potato dumplings and mince pies. We chatted and sang songs and felt good.

As we walked home in the cold that night, we all felt that it was a great Christmas Eve.

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