So it’s been in Christmas. Again … We hope you all had a really lovely one, with all that comes with that – loved ones, far too much good food and drinks and hopefully temperatures below zero and a white blanket of snow on the ground.
To celebrate Christmas in the middle of the summer, which is the case if you are in South Africa, is still a bit strange. It’s hard to find that real Christmas spirit when the sun is shining and it‘s approaching 30 degrees Celsius. However, it becomes less and less weird for every year that passes.
One advantage is of course also that you get two Christmases! A Swedish one on Christmas Eve and a South African one on Christmas Day 🙂 This year we had to move the Swedish Christmas a little, because Lina flew to Sweden on 20 December. So we bunched Christmas Eve together with St Lucy’s Day and celebrated Christmas on 13 December. Cheating!, as my very tradition-bound sister Sofia said, but sometimes you have to improvise.
In fact, there are a lot of Swedish food to buy here so you can have a pretty good Swedish Christmas – you can get Abbas herring here, for example. However, we have developed this, so every time Lina goes to Sweden she brings tinned herring (no spiced added) so that we can make our own herring. And if I may say so myself, we make the world’s best herring!
We also make our own beetroot salad, Jansson’s Temptation (Lina must once again help out and import the Swedish anchovies), ham, meatballs, fudge and a whole lot of other goodies. And mulled wine, or Glögg as it’s called, of course (we use ready made spice packages in a good South African wine. And this is actually best served cold here in the heat …
While Lina celebrated a wonderfully genuine Swedish Christmas with the whole family, Freddy and I chose to keep it very simple and we packed a picnic basket and went to Walter Sisulu Botanical Garden. Here we had a wonderful time until the clouds looked a little too threatening.