Sunday, January 03, 2010

Nollaig Na Mban (again)



As Daughter and I attack the last load of fancy china and put away the rarely used silver serving spoons, I reflect on the privilege of being able to host a Women’s Christmas (aka Nollaig na Mban – written about previously in this list of posts) for the first time here in Newfoundland in my magical home by the sea. The oldest today was 87 and the youngest was 5. Apart from Daughter and Niece, the rest of the friends here were all relatively new to my life in chronology but long in shared tribal origins and in making room in each other’s hearts relatively late in life for new friendships. Living proof that it can be done.

There were 13 of us - never an unlucky number I say - in total, a bit of a squeeze around the long harvest table but we managed. We sipped from delicate china cups and ate many courses, salads, fruits, my Famous Strata, perogies, sausages, blueberry cobbler (I froze blueberries picked from the Barrens in September), Irish biscuits and cheeses, raisin scones, treacle scones and Irish soda bread with organic butter.

Great chat was generated, as only a gathering of disparate women can do, it was interesting watching the youngest and the eldest there bond so tightly even though they had not met before. So much in common, I would think!

I feel so blessed and so honoured that my home can be the scene of such warmth and camaraderie.

Thank you, to the spirits of Granny and Mum and my nine blood aunts for showing me the way!

15 comments:

  1. That sounds like the sort of celebration I'd like to host one day.

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  2. Welcome Chelsea and we can celebrate our bibliophilia!
    The time is now to host....seriously.
    XO
    WWW

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  3. Oh, what a beautiful community you have created, dear WWW. Food, talk, community = love.

    Wishing you the best ever of new years.
    love,
    v

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  4. What a grand thing to do. We all seem so busy that we often forget how wonderful and renewing this sort of gathering can be.

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  5. The idea of a Women's Christmas is a great one, and yours was obviously much enjoyed. I've never heard of such a thing in NI or England, perhaps because women are nervous of male reactions.

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  6. I've never been "one of the gals", much preferring mixed company, but your get-together does sound lovely WWW.

    Mmmm - soda bread and organic butter - I am drooling! What are perogies?

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  7. Sounds wonderful! All the best in 2010!

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  8. what a lovely tradition yummy, too. raisin scones and soda bread with fresh butter. YUM.

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  9. Verna:
    Yes it was well received and will remain a treasured event in my heart.
    Backatcha on the New Year's wishes!
    XO
    WWW

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  10. Brighid:
    Yes, renewing I would call it too!
    We need more of such events!
    XO
    WWW

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  11. Nick:
    I think it was a specialty of the south of Ireland and directly related to the pagan rites of preChristian times when the Celtic Goddess Brigid was prominent.
    XO
    WWW

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  12. T:
    Yes I loved mixed gatherings too but we were all saying how truly lovely a gathering of the female species can be, a very very different energy in the room. More emotional depth and less censoring.
    Perogies are from Poland/Russia originally, very like dumplings but stuffed with potato and cheddar.
    XO
    WWW

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  13. Backatcha, Annie, I wish you could have joined us!!
    XO
    WWW

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  14. Laurie:
    A woman after my own heart, yes delish!!!
    XO
    WWW

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  15. I, too, had 13 for Christmas dinner. I thought it was a fine number. Yours sounds amazingly varied and full of happiness.

    Happy New Year, wise one.

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