Today I bought the rest of the ingredients for the fun part, which is putting everything into a vat and mixing it up with my arm. My vat used to be part of a tabletop oven. I have no interest in the heating device/lid, but the safety-glass oven itself is excellent for mixing the Christmas Cake batter.
Christmas decorations appeared in Edinburgh shops on November 1, and there are now post-Bonfire Night supermarket adverts--actually alluding to Bonfire Night--on TV counselling us not to resent Christmas stuff. "Too soon?" asks a supermarket ad husband, showing his wife a Christmas song CD. "Nah, bring it on," says the supermarket ad wife.
Since proper Christmas Cake must soak in brandy (or rum, if your family uses rum instead) for at least six weeks before eating, the appearance of Christmas adverts is a sign that it is now time to start the Cake. Perhaps this is why I don't mind the beginning of British Christmas shopping season falling on November 1. Meanwhile, many Britons--including my husband--get holidays from Christmas Day until New Year's Day, so there are at least Eight Days of Christmas, instead of Almost Two Months and Then Blah. Friends of ours have an annual Twelfth Night party, too, so traditionally enought that is the last hoorah before Burns' night.
This year I have promised B.A. that I will not go crazy with the Christmas baking and will even make a small version of the trifle. I didn't say anything about the Cake. Or the Bun. Wigilia Supper, however, has been banned by name.
"Unless a Pole spends Christmas here," I qualified.
"No," said B.A.