Neither of us has relatives nearby, and as Kate's brother is in retail, her brother-in-law provides customer support for something that doesn't stop even during holidays, and her mother's a deacon, there would be no point in trying to visit them at Christmas. We'll be gathering the clan in late January, as usual. So for now, we have nothing to do but hang out with our friends. I think we have some kind of party or dinner every single day this week and next.
Today we got up around 8:30 and made banana-buttermilk pancakes before opening our presents to each other. I got Kate an iPod-dock-radio (I found one with knobs rather than tiny little buttons), the new Linda Thompson CD, and a promise to clear off the mantelpiece and the floor on my side of the bed by January 15. She got me the Lord of the Rings trilogy on DVD, a big bag of popcorn, and a decorative glass dragonfly.
In some ways Christmas is no different than any other day, now that I'm not working. But it was very quiet when we went for a walk in the neighborhood, and everywhere we saw empty parking lots and darkened shops that are otherwise always bustling. And then... snow! A light dusting, just enough to stick, and the air just cold enough to justify earmuffs. Just enough to make the day special, not enough to be a hassle. Perfect.
We spent the rest of the morning cleaning and cooking for Boxing Day, when we're having a couple friends over. In the afternoon and evening, our traditional movie-and-squid with our friend Michael. This year's movie was Enchanted, which was even better than I'd expected, followed by, as always, the best pepper-salted squid on the planet. After dinner, another thousand words on the novel.
I like my life.
Here's hoping your day was as fine.