Holiday Downtime

Relaxing with friends can be very restorative after hard days at work, as can relaxing at home in the warmth. Over the last few weeks, I’ve had the privilege to do both.

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A Christmas meal with my closest friends has always been a tradition for my wife and I. This year we opted for a pub in Kingston called The Boaters, a warm and inviting place by the river. The food was a mixed bag but the drinks and atmosphere were suitably festive… particularly as free shots were given to anyone willing to perform Christmas karaoke for the whole pub. We took the floor for Fairytale of New York and earned ourselves some whisky and sambuca.

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Strolling around the streets of London also proves to be uplifting at this time of year. The grounds around St. Paul’s Cathedral look very festive with trees and lights setting the night aglow.

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Last night, we went to a panto because… well because it’s Christmas! A glass of wine and plenty of bad puns aimed at the audience ensured the evening went down swimmingly. Since my wife was kind enough to buy the tickets, I treated her to a steak dinner after the show.

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Which brings me to enjoying my favourite present at home… a bottle of single malt Yamazaki whisky. I usually prefer blends to single malts (to the disdain of my older brother, who fancies himself a whisky connoseur). But I have to admit this one is rather good. Mild smokiness offsets the tangy punch you get so it goes down a treat, particularly when drunk mizuwari style (with water).

Tomorrow, I’m sending out 2015 in style at an excellent restaurant with live music. Whatever you’re doing on New Year’s Eve, stay safe and have fun!

I’ll see you on the other side.

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