Today’s post is a re-run of last year’s Boxing Day post, in part for the same reasons you will read in the first paragraph below! My house is a disaster, I am exhausted and in pain from having done something or other to my back yesterday, the laundry has piled up, and I need a break! But the other reason is that this was a fun and educational post, and perhaps there are some who didn’t see it last year. So … Happy Boxing Day!!!
Good morning, friends! I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas, as did we. We enjoyed family and friends, baking & cooking, giving and receiving, but I have to say I am exhausted, and quite ready for the holidays to be over. I need a break in order to put my house back into some semblance of order! But as we have many friends in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and the UK, I would like to wish them all a Happy Boxing Day!
No no no no no … not that kind of boxing! Boxing Day is on December 26th, the day after Christmas, and it is a bank holiday in the UK and Canada. A brief bit about the origins of Boxing Day …
There are a few competing stories for the origin of the name, and while none are definitive, the one that seems most commonly accepted is that the day after Christmas was when servants of the wealthy were given time off to visit their family, as they were needed to work on Christmas Day. Each servant would be given a box to take home with food, a bonus and gifts. In Britain, it was a custom for tradespeople to collect “Christmas boxes” of money or presents on the first weekday after Christmas as thanks for good service throughout the year.
So how do our friends up north and across the big pond celebrate Boxing Day? I went ‘in search of …’ and came up with some fun things, though I strongly suspect that most people spend the day recuperating from Christmas. Let’s look at a few …
There is an annual barrel rolling race in Grantchester, Cambridgeshire
Until 2004 when the UK imposed a ban on foxhunting, it used to be a tradition on Boxing Day
I understand that sports are big on boxing day, with horse racing and football. But remember that what they call ‘football’ is actually what we in the U.S. refer to as soccer. I asked one of my friends across the pond once, when he mentioned ‘football’ if he was referring to the kind with an ovoid pigskin ball where large people try to kill one another, or the kind that is played with a geometric-patterned black & white ball. I was informed in no uncertain terms that he was referring to ‘real’ football and that what we called football was but a cheap knock-off. I never made that mistake again!
And then there is shopping. One article I read compared Boxing Day shopping with Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, in the U.S. Apparently all the stores have huge sales. But my question here is … who has any money after Christmas?
And so, to our friends across the big pond, however you spend Boxing Day, I hope it is a fun and/or relaxing day for you! Happy Boxing Day!!!