Christmas Day dawned cloudy and cool. The air was humid and a little heavy, but overall pleasant. The sky was white, even if the ground was not.
I offered to host a Christmas Brunch for a handful of interns who were all in Tangjia for Christmas. We’d been planning for a week as I told them my ideas and they offered to bring various breakfast foods.
The night before most of us had been to a Christmas Eve party hosted by Europeans also living in Horizon Cove. There was Finish-Estonian style dinner with "piggy 🐷 and fish 🐟 " along with a gift exchange and decidedly un-christmas-like music. I left the party around 11:15pm, but rumor has it some guests partied until morning.
The other interns began arriving at my apartment around 9:45am on Sunday morning, just as I was finishing mixing up the pancake batter. I had already shredded my potatoes to the dulcet tones of Patrick Stewart reading A Christmas Carol.
I made pancakes (some with chocolate chips), homemade hash browns (basically just hot shredded potatoes), “American bacon” (actually closer to Canadian bacon). Other interns brought egg bake, fruit: bananas, strawberries, and shaddock; apple cinnamon oatmeal, and small egg custards. We had ample amounts of coffee and tea, thanks to our hot water pot and three French presses.
The food all tasted great, thankfully, even though my hash browns looked a little rough. Pancakes were a hit as well. I've been trying to remember, but I think this was the first Christmas I've been away from home. But gathered around friends, each of us thousands of miles from home, was a great way to spend the morning.
After brunch we took a group photo and watched The Grinch Who Stole Christmas and National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.
I skyped with my family for a bit during the first film. It was great to talk to them. It's also the biggest skype call I've ever been on. Six participants (four devices) across four timezones. But it worked surprisingly well.
The movies finished around 3:30pm and after spending a half hour helping me do dishes and clean the others left with plans that we’d meet around 6:15pm for a family style dinner in Tangjia. It was a very different Christmas for me this year, but a very good one as well.
Non-food photos courtesy of Alex and his brand new (not that I'm envious) Canon 6D. Thanks Alex!