What do you think of “Xmas?”
The “X” stands for the Greek letter “Chi,” which is the first letter of the Greek word Χριστός, which in English is “Christ”. The “-mas” part is from the Latin-derived Old English word for Mass.
So there. That should also serve as my own reference as soon as I forget what in the spirit of the holiday season does it mean. I normally do not spell Christmas “Xmas” even if it means saving space or economizing characters in a text message. That is the reason why I only remember why Christmas is sometimes spelled Xmas only when I read why or because it happens to be that time, the “most wonderful time of the year.”
In the course of two decades I celebrated Christmas with family and friends only three times. Some of the other Xmases I have been either alone or alone for a couple of those years and nursing a broken heart to boot. But I love Christmas a.k.a. Xmas so much that celebrating without the company of other beautiful humans over the years never made a difference in the way I respond to it. It apparently also helps that I love food and use it to celebrate whether things are up or down.
Less than twelve hours ago there was a conflict between my visa and my work permit. A threat more like to be honest. Some staff girl in the liaison office unfortunately mixed up numbers on important documents, but as soon as it became clear that the problem was going to be sorted, as most problems are anyway, I started imagining all the treats I was going to get my hands on.
Where is that latest Michelin star restaurant in town? Which cafe has the best red velvet cake? Which recipe should I tinker with next? Book a table in that palace-turned-garden restaurant….
Xmas Gastronomy. These are some of what’s been happening so far in my little corner –
1 Vegetarian potluck solution. I didn’t know these things could be tricky. Ideas everywhere but not a dish to bring. Finally I rang a bakery.
2 This should hopefully be the last meatloaf of the year. When I hit 40 I began refraining from meat
3 Maybe a little rough around the edges, but very yummy. It looks like banana cake and tastes like yema (candy made from condensed milk)
4 – 5 Some days I put things together myself
6 – 7 Rice dishes; the tamarind sauce (lower photo) is to die for
8 – 9 Vegetarian dishes
10 – 13 A little sugar rush. Chocolate with the red velvet is divine. Purple macaroon has a lavender scent while the red one is rose