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Xmas Lunch Wars

posted 13 Dec 2010, 05:26 by Mpelembe   [ updated 13 Dec 2010, 05:27 ]

It's that time of the year again, the time of year when
pre-Xmas family wars suddenly burst in to life and rip
through the relations faster than a bush fire in a town made
of dry straw.

You may have already experienced your own blazing row or
endless sulk session as relatives step in to the ring and
start to scrap over who, exactly, is going where and with
whom, for Xmas lunch. As luck would have it, I'm a very
happy granny this year as virtual grandpa Bob and I are
visiting favourite relatives with various grandchildren in

Last year I hosted Xmas and had so many people in the house
I was like the old woman who lived in the shoe, but I wasn't
just surrounded by so many children that I didn't know what
to do, but with brothers, sisters, great grannies, step
children, girlfriends, wives…in fact Tom Cobley and

I think everyone loved it. I loved it…about six
months later when I had recovered enough to look back and
laugh as I recollected…the dishes eternally stacked
high, the beds eternally being stripped and turned around
for the next wave of guests, the endless dietary
requirements demanded by various visitors and the time I
spent in the kitchen.

Actually I spent so much time last year in the kitchen that
granddaughter Lily ran in there one day, whilst I was
scaling a particularly mountainous pile of dishes, and
announced that she had come up with a great idea "Hey
Granny, I've got a great idea!" she proclaimed, pleased as
punch with herself.

I abseiled down from the top of the greasy pile, thrilled to
see a human face, though I had heard lots of cheerful voices,
way down the hall, far far away, in another land, free from
dirty plates and pots and pans and soggy gravy covered
leftovers - the lounge, that is. The voices sounded warm and
happy the way voices sound when they are coming out of people
clapped out in front of the fire, cheerfully knocking back
nuts, reading out cracker jokes and fighting over Quality
Street favourites.

"You are always in the kitchen." Lily said, biting off the
head of her chocolate Santa.
"Hmmm, so someone's finally noticed…" I wiped a bead
of sweat (or it may have been Turkey fat) from my brow.
Martyrdom kicking in as the sympathetic golden haired face
of an angel patted my hand and stuffed the crumpled
chocolate wrapper in to it.
"So why don't we bring a little bed in here for you, so that
you can stay in the kitchen all of the time?"

Hmmm, I'm convinced that there was a truly kind intention
behind the offer, even if the delivery of the idea left a
little to be desired. But last Xmas wasn't the worst Xmas,
not the one that still brings me out in a cold sweat in the
middle of the night cringing with embarrassment. Oh yes. My
bottom's clenched even now, as the long ago memory comes to
mind. That was the Xmas when death came unexpectedly to the
table. I will tell you all about it next time…

About the Author:

Marrisse Whittaker is a TV Producer,scriptwriter & creator of
Virtualgranny is a website for grandparents with a young
outlook. The site has features, video content, social
networking & a shopping mall. An online soap for
grandparents is coming soon. What would you like to see on
site? Log on and have your say!