Kiwi Christmas

This family DO Christmas. And they do it properly. All the food, all the games, all the presents. I was not really feeling Christmassy all around the country. The are no dark days, huddles around the pubs fire with mulled wine, and the German Market don’t come this far out. Who worries about putting on factor 50 sunscreen at Christmas time?! But the quantity of lights, tinsel and food in that house brought it to life. Even in the middle of summer.

So, in the middle of summer, how did we spend Christmas?

Mark and Martin laid on breakfast. Everything you could think of, from cereal to bacon, smoothies to cheese, avocado, eggs, oranges and their juice. There was so much and yet with 15 people to serve they got it exactly right. No one was hungry and nothing was left over – good job!

Mark let me have a go on his electric skateboard made by Boosted. Very uncommon in NZ right now I suspect they will take off very quickly as prices decrease. It was a neat bit of kit and fairly easy to control now I had mastered a push along long board. It was also less likely to kill you than what David has produced.

After putting on some sunscreen (AT CHRISTMAS) we grabbed the paddle boards and walked them down to the busiest beach on the planet. Spending a few hours in brilliant sunshine paddling around, i found a few excuses to fall in and cool off… Well, I’m claiming it was by choice. Playing a bit of nerf ball and trying not to hit people was also a good sport. In the end we just chilled out on the sand and passed around warm beers till it was time to drag the boats back up the hill. This is when I truely appreciated how steep the hill is up to their house. I was a bucket of sweat by the time I reached it, I needed a cold shower to stop me changing into the hulks sweaty, crimson brother. Now less damp and more presentable, the Christmas meal started proper. There were 19 of us in total, spread around 3 tables scavenged from all corners of the house. Each family in attendance had brought a dish or a pudding or a starter. The was such a variety, and so much, that even only taking a small bit of each, soon my plate was stacked high with tasty looking food. It was the right amount to achieve the ultimate Christmas goal of stretching your gut out to the next belt size.

The food had been laid out next to the kitchen in a buffet style so while we ate we were staring at all the presents to be opened on the dinner table. The anticipation rose as the dinner plates were washed and packed away and the room rearranged for the games.

The huge pile of presents was now presided over by George who explained the rules. This game is something I’m going to suggest next year as it was great and everyone ended up with a gift they wanted. I played tactically to end up with small gifts I could continue travelling with! Last thing I wanted to do was carry around a cheese board the rest of my journey!

The night was finished up with the aussie version of Cards Against Humanity. As the title on the box said: A game for horrible people. Horrible may be, but writhing uncontrollably with laugher for hours!