We’re doing the unheard of this evening and brewing tea in a mug. We’ve reconciled this with our conscience by deciding that what we’re really doing is christening a gift of a Christmas mug with a cup of English Toffee tea. Also, we’re too tired to observe the complete sacrament of tea. This is a shame, as English Toffee is clearly a tea that deserves sacramaentalisig. It’s a beautiful balance of Pu’erh tea and toffee flavour -enough to give it a shape but not so much as to trigger our lack of a sweet tooth into protest. Chiefly though it’s existing to revitalise us.
Somewhere on the internet there exists a wonderful rewrite of ‘Ye Watchers and Ye Holy Ones’ to an Easter theme, and it begins, Now Christ is risen from the dead/the Choristers can go to bed… Sadly, no one has yet troubled with a Christmas equivalent, but you can take it on good authority that the sentiment is the same. More so, in fact, since the marathon combination of the Tridium and Easter taps into reserves of energy that Christmas Eve doesn’t begin to plumb. Probably there is an interesting theological nuance to be teased out here, but we don’t feel equal to the task presently.
The Canadian family will vouch for the fact our brains are still somewhere in the choir vestry, probably frozen due to the boiler failure we continue to experience. Forced to explain what a minced pie was (one of the relocated Canadians rather sweetly worried it might not be vegetarian) we managed to garble things about boiled fruit and sugar but didn’t do much better -though we did usefully recollect that Cromwell once banned them.
Here, before we settle into a long day of restorative reading, is one last poem for the last of the Advent teas. There might be more of it, but the version we’re recording comes hand-written from the inside of a Christmas card . We relay it with warm wishes for a Happy Christmastide.
From ‘THe Gude and Goldie Ballats’
(attributed Martin Luther, translated John Wedderburn)
This day to you is born ane child
Of Mary meek and virgin milde,
That blessed bairn being and kind
Sall you rejoice baith hart and mind.