Fra Angelico - St Lawrence Giving Alms (c. 1450) So did you have a good Christmas Day? Are you ready for Boxing Day?

Americans always ask “What is this Boxing Day thing? Huh, limey? What does it MEAN?”

Traditionally, it was the day when the masters / rich gave the servants / poor their seasonal gifts / money. In the huge homes of the wealthy, Boxing Day would be the day when the servants of all the extended families present were allowed to gather together to eat and drink and celebrate Christmas. Obviously they would’ve been on duty throughout Christmas Day itself, bringing succulent treats to their pampered employers.

Many women in my mother’s family (from maternal great-grandmother backwards) were in domestic service. I am therefore going to have the laziest day I can possibly manage, in dedication to those women and their back-breaking toil. I think they’d be proud that a female descendant of theirs could afford to be idle so much of the time, and with such silky soft never-done-a-proper-day’s-work-in-her-life hands.

Let us drink a toast to the dismantling of the British class system!

(which is scheduled for the day after muscat grapes are harvested in the Sahara)

I may write more here during Boxing Day, but… y’know, only if I can be bothered. First, I’m going to paint my nails a glossy crimson and watch The Philadelphia Story. It’s what Great-Granny would’ve wanted.