Happy Christmas Eve Eve by Joy Margetts


If you are a fan of Friends you might remember Phoebe uttering those memorable words in a certain Christmas episode of the show. It caused a laugh. As did much of what came out of the hapless Phoebe’s mouth to be honest. And it is still watched as a meme on YouTube – the clip I found lasts all of 4 seconds and has had 8.1K views.

Yes, today is the day before the day before the big event. What does that mean to you? Perhaps you are still frantically last minute shopping, especially food and drink, maybe even presents. Perhaps it is your last day of work before the holidays begin. Perhaps, like me it is a day to consolidate. How far have I got with the wrapping? Have I got enough sprouts? What needs to go on my 'to do' list for Christmas Eve? Is the cake iced, the pastry defrosting, the cookies made? Or perhaps you are just ignoring the fact that it is all kicking off the day after tomorrow, and burying yourself in a Christmas movie marathon, the mulled wine at hand.

I wonder, do you have any family traditions for the 23rd December? Perhaps you do and I would love to know what they are. But I guess for most of us it is more of a panic and get things done kind of day. Getting the last of the laundry done. Hoovering through. Bathing the dog... Getting ready for the guests to arrive. Or maybe packing the car to make the journey to meet up with loved ones.

Some places in the world 23rd December is celebrated as a special day in its own right:

In Sudan it is ‘Children’s Day’ - which sounds rather lovely this close to Christmas

In the Ukraine it is the ‘Day of all level operational control structures servicemen’? Honouring their Armed forces I think!

And in Oaxaca City, Mexico it is the ‘Night of the Radishes’ !!? I know. I had to look it up. It involves a radish carving competition…

In Norway, 23rd December is known as ‘Little Christmas Eve’ and is traditionally a family time of decorating the tree or making gingerbread houses together. In Sweden, likewise, they finish all their prep on this day, as the main family Christmas events are celebrated on 24th not the 25th December.

In Iceland, 23rd December is Saint Thorlak Thorhallsson Day (easy for you to say!) It is marked by the eating of fish, most commonly putrefied skate, and mashed potatoes, with a shot of Brennivin (40% proof). I’m not sure about the putrefied fish, which apparently smells as bad as it sounds, but a shot of something strong might go down a treat this evening when I finally sit down.

So however you are celebrating today, whatever you are doing, and especially if you actually manage to get any writing done, can I be the first to wish you a very 

Happy Christmas Eve Eve. 

(Except of course if your name is Eve – and then it would be Happy Christmas Eve Eve, Eve)


Peter Leyland said…
Great thought Joy. Today while Sue was at work I did the final Xmas food shop and the washing and then indulged myself by listening to my vinyl copies of Rubber Soul and Revolver on the record player. Your post made me think it's ok to do unusual things on this day. Thanks
Joy Margetts said…
Thanks Peter. It's a strange kind of day... I actually keep thinking it's Christmas Eve and having a little panic!

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