Looking at this photo, you would think that the St. Stephen’s Day Terrorist was the small, white dog who had eaten something that didn’t agree with his little belly. But no, as painfully odorous as that was, the St. Stephen’s Day Terrorist was actually my mother, who held us hostage with her particular brand of SingStar strategy.
Let me backtrack.
For those that don’t know, St. Stephen’s Day
(the day after Christmas
) is an Irish holiday and since my Irish mother was visiting, we celebrated it. Plus, the 26th is also Boxing Day
for the English, and guess who’s English… Mr. & Mrs. London are that’s who. So the day after Christmas
, we went to Toulon to have a nice, family holiday (both Mrs. London’s mother and brother were over from London, and with my mother as well, it was like a mini family reunion… in the South of France… I love that!
). Sadly for Mr. London, he had to go back to the UK that night for a funeral and would be missing out on all of the family fun time.
Family fun time like exchanging presents (OK, technically Mr. London was still there for this, but he was like a zombie apocalypse casualty do to a tad too much ‘Christmas Spirit’ the night before). A bottle of Jack Daniel’s Honey whisky from Dan-Dan (Mrs London’s brother) and a bottle of Champagne from Mrs. London. They both gave us alcohol…. hmmm… not sure what they’re trying to say, but I like it. (I’m saving that Rosé Champagne for my birthday… only seventeen days left to go!)
I gave the gift of reading to Mrs. London… one of my absolute favorites; The Bronze Horseman trilogy
. (If you haven’t already read it, please add it immediately to your goodreads. Go now, I’ll be here when you get back.
The Husband gave Mr. London a framed photo… it’s Mr. London and an ASM Clermont player colliding. I’m not sure who was tackling who, but it’s a humdinger. I’d love to show it to you but then Mr. London would get pouty, and his pout rivals The Husband’s, so no thank you, but it is quite spectacular actually (both the pouting and the photo).
Napoleon got Fifty’s Christmas elf hat that Fifty had outgrown…
Dan-Dan and The Husband played with a new remote controlled helicopter, until one of them got it stuck on the roof… luckily Dan-Dan has big shoulders…
We put our pyjamas on at a ridiculously early hour (because the key word in family fun time is ‘family’ so that means pyjamas are always allowed), popped some Champagne (for about the third or fourth time that day) and played cards.
It was the L O N G E S T game of Phase 10 in the history of mankind. It was so long, I half expected Mr. London to have returned from the UK (obviously, I’m exaggerating, but it was over two hours and that’s a ridiculous amount of time to be playing one card game… blame it on the Champagne I guess).
And after the world’s longest card game, we moved to the living room for the main event… family fun time SingStar. Do you ever wish that you could go back in time and not do something… yeah this is one of those times. None of us have any right to sing ever (with the exception of Mrs. London’s mother… she’s got the voice of a wee angel).
It was not pretty (blaming it on the Champagne again) but that didn’t stop us from getting competitive. And my mother’s competitive streak led her to this strategy… sing louder than everyone else (which basically means shouting), accent the last word of every line, and you’ll win (it felt like we were being held hostage… seriously).
But that didn’t really work… it only resulted in a loss to The Husband (“But Gregory doesn’t even speak English!!! How could he have beaten me???”), and a rendition of The Commodore’s classic, ‘Brick House’, that will remain burned into our memories forever.
Naturally a performance such as the one we were subjected to, would lead to some teasing. So at breakfast the next morning, we asked each other questions, questions like:
Where does Obama live? He lives in the White HOUSE.