Ring out the old ring in the new. What a difference one non-descript day presumes to make. Suddenly we all want to resolve to do something; do more exercise, eat less chocolate, drink less wine (that’s mine). But it is easy to commit to resolutions from the depths of a sofa, wine glass in one hand, chocolate in the other. When, on the first Monday back at work, we have to drive through the sheets of rain (yes, the rain is back with a vengeance) over potholes down the darkening streets, desperately searching for a parking place. Then venture forth to get bashed around by blustery, wet gales as we struggle to cross the road and run for cover, umbrella whipped inside out. Suffice to say that our daily quest to get to and fro from work here in the north of Portugal is sufficient to make us think of returning home, sinking into that sofa, savouring a slice of Terry’s chocolate orange and uncorking a bottle.
How long did it take for resolve to disappear? 3 days?
Not that I didn’t have a good break. Actually it was more like a retreat because my household transformed into little Britain over Christmas, apart from a quick foray out into the land of boiled codfish on Christmas Eve, washed down with some good wine whilst cleverly avoiding the offers of Pão de lô (dryish sponge cake), Bolo Rei (dryish sort of fruit cake/bun) and Rabanadas (type of cold French toast). You guessed, Portuguese Christmas fare is not on my list of favourites. Christmas day however was a haven of roast turkey and all the trimmings, Christmas crackers, Christmas pud with brandy sauce (made by mum), sherry trifle (made by dad) and boxes of milk tray and after eight in front of the telly...