Thursday, 26 December 2013

Is it over yet?


No, not quite,
go back to sleep for a bit longer.


It’s Boxing Day (St. Stephen’s Day) - on this day tradesmen, servants and children went ‘Boxing’,  soliciting gifts and tips from householders they had served during the year. The tips were put into slitted, earthenware ‘Christmas Boxes’.

When Boxing Day comes round again
O then I shall have money.
I’ll hoard it up and Box and all
I’ll give it to my honey.


or, more likely,
I’ll take it all to the shops.
It’s the first day of the post-Christmas Sales,
and  some people were queuing to be first into the shop at midnight!


41 comments:

  1. Hi Friko .. I love the history behind the name Boxing Day ... and honestly can't believe people were queueing at the 'big shops' in the cities to grab bargains ... not my idea of fun, nor yours I'd guess.

    We had a gorgeous sunny day today - tomorrow looms wondrously wet ... I just hope for so many it doesn't get worse ..

    Cheers Hilary

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  2. it never fails to amaze me that people are just as anxious to get in the stores immediately after christmas as they are during the shopping season. do they never get enough of it? all those gifts bought thoughtlessly or in desperation because of the requirement of gift giving are now being returned.

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  3. Boxing Day used to be the day of the biggest sales in Canada. Anyone who needed new major appliances or furniture would line up long before the stores opened, to be there for the best bargains.
    We have a new refrigerator thanks to the Boxing Day sales, one with an ice-maker which my husband wanted and which he alternately loves and hates, depending whether it is spewing ice directly into his glass, or all over the floor. Before I go to bed at night, when I'm checking to see doors are locked and lights are off, I try to remember to turn the ice-maker off for the night, because its sudden noises in the night never fail to wake me up.
    Now that Canada has adopted other sales (such as the "Black Friday" sale after American Thanksgiving, for no apparent reason, as Canadian Thanksgiving is a month earlier) and extended Boxing Day to a week ("Boxing Week") and now, as I saw the other day, "Boxing Month" I want nothing to do with any of it.
    I would prefer giving tips to the servants.
    K

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  4. PS
    However, I hope you and Beloved and Millie had a good Christmas, and I'm sending love and best wishes for the coming year.
    K

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  5. ha. i went to the store today...cashed in a gift card...wasnt too crazy out here...ours is black friday...that is the nastiest day of the year....

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  6. I had always wondered what Boxing Day meant -- and now I know thanks to you, Friko! Also loved your comment on my blog with your solution to family-inflicted holiday pain: emigrate! I'm still smiling. Thanks for the day-brightener!

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  7. I hate the crowds and the traffic, and all the commotion. I prefer sleeping in until the middle of January when the white sales start (linens and mattresses...) and even winter clothes are reduced to their lowest. Yep, by then, nobody has any extra money, anyhow, and we just need to get out of the house. Have a great new year.

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  8. Oh dear, standing in line at midnight? Never! :-)

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  9. A quiet day here but I know that in town there will be line-ups for the Boxing Day sales - not something I'm interested in at all! A cup of tea, a fire, a good book.

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  10. The shopping marathon started early here too. Without me.

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  11. Thank you. I have wondered what the term meant. Now if I can only remember it. Dianne

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  12. I recognise the sleeping bears in the Charles Darwin. Hope they make lots of money for their charity collection.

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  13. I rather think it is a fabulous day..MY GRANDDAUGHTER WAS JUST BORN!!
    Shopping...hate it...sale or no sale......I need very little
    ..I guess I am just getting like my grandmother....who knew?

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  14. I am a servant. Please mail some tips to me. I accept cash only.

    Love,
    Janie

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  15. I read in the U.K. online newspapers that Quataris and Chinese are spending more then the British in the post Christmas sales in the U.K.
    This seems logical as no doubt they have more money...but how do the newspapers know this?

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  16. Boxing Day is slow around here - nibbling leftovers, reading, drinking tea. A lovely post-Christmas Day glow.

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  17. Boxing Day is interesting! I cannot imagine queueing up in line to purchase things yet again! Glad somebody enjoys it. I've also enjoyed your entire recent seasonal posts. :-)

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  18. Interesting post...I never knew why it was called Boxing Day. We usually refer to it as St. Stephen's Day here, and the tradition when I was growing up was to "hunt the wren", which meant going round houses in the freezing cold, playing music to raise money for charity. Wasn't much fun!
    i never go to the 1st day of post-Christmas sales, it's way too hectic and I would buy rubbish I don't need, I prefer the ending days of sales.
    Hope you had a good one!

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  19. Boxing day is more like that second scenario around here too. Though I have never indulged in the sales.

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  20. BEST Boxing Day post EVER!

    ALOHA to YOU
    from Honolulu
    Comfort Spiral
    =^..^= <3

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  21. Friko, from the other side of the December 26 store counter, I can report that lots of folks were looking for sale bargains, some were returning gifts that they'd either purchased hoping that the recipient would approve the choice, or other were returning some of those choices...in a very low-key discrete way, hoping to discover their true size in stock, or something that suited their own true (if unknown to their nearest and dearest) tastes.

    Lots of insights into human nature on display today. From my side of the counter and from the customers' side, too.

    Glad to have tomorrow off. xo

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  22. I like the idea of Boxing Day! Here, there is no "day" for it -- just sales and returns. And here in Michigan, people going to stores just to get warm on Day 5 of Ice Storm 2013.

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  23. Talking of the Feast of Stephen, I heard a very funny sketch on the radio the other day (perhaps you heard it too?) - a dramatisation of the encounter between King Wenceslas and the poor man he helped out. Something like "You turn up with a leg of pork on the Feast of Stephen! Don't you know what day it was yesterday? I've been living on beetroot for the last year and here you come the day after Christmas... Pine logs? What do I want them for? What was I doing when you first saw me? I live in the middle of a "£%$£ pine forest!"

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  24. I was just asking Dave today what people did on Boxing Day, and neither of us knew. I was too forgetful to look it up when I got back in range of the interweaves, and now I happen across this. Ma'am, you have done a service. Will you be wanting a tip?

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  25. Due to the lack of finances, I haven't done any shopping for gifts this year and I doubt that any of those sales now are going to lure me into a store. I've enjoyed not being part of the madness and hope I'm forgiven for being like Scrooge. I would like to go around with a box myself.

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  26. Do you day Happy Boxing Day?? Hope your holidays were and going to be healthy and prosperous.

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  27. You can breathe again. It's over.

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  28. I've heard about that boxing day ritual, I'd also heard that on boxing day, servants lined up and each received a box of packaged left over Christmas food to take home to their families. To ensure there was enough to go around, cooks would purposely prepare and cook extra food.

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  29. We made the mistake of trying to get into Exeter yesterday and turned back. Please let it be over soon! Thanks for stopping by at my blog Friko!

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  30. PS - I've just become your 500th follower!

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  31. Yes, thank God, it's over. Now, after two or three days rest, I can get back to normal.

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  32. Well , yes it is ... but now everyone is madly restocking the 'fridge for New Year , laying in gallons of booze and an arsenal of fireworks .
    I'd stay undercover till Thursday .

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  33. Not over me for me, Friko. I'm an Advent is for waiting and the Twelve Days are for celebrating kind of person and I still have 8 more days of Christmas to go. :-) As for the sales, you can keep them.....

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  34. i hadn't heard this piece of history about Boxing Day, so thanks for that Friko. I'm glad to be out of town and in the peace while the commercial world carries on with its frantic sales.

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  35. Not interested in the sales myself, but I had to go to Aldi yesterday to get fresh fruit and other stuff for the weekend. It was pretty packed, but the atmosphere was relaxed and a lot less hectic there than what it had been before Christmas.
    Your picture is really a good representation of "is it over yet".

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  36. For me it is over.
    Forgive me
    But kind of glad
    I do most shopping online
    but in January will venture to several stores
    if weather is not too bad.
    Also need to restock some linens
    which will soon be on sale.
    Take care...

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  37. Sounds like the day after Thanksgiving over here in the US. Not my cuppa tea, for sure. But sure is for a lot of people. ;)

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  38. What a great photo!! Sometimes I'd love to be able to hibernate all through Xmas and the summer school holidays ... but collecting cash to go shopping with has a certain appeal too! Happy New Year!!

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  39. I remember Boxing Day in London but here there is no such day. In my company though we closed between Christmas and New Year, so that was nice. I have to go to the stores today to buy a new wall calendar. I also have to buy some black eye peas to cook on New Year’s Day. It is the custom here, so we will have good luck in the forthcoming year. I hope you will have good luck in 2014!

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  40. We had Wren Day in Ireland on this day. Barbaric when I was younger. Dead birds on branches and nasty boys with demands. Paganistic perhaps. Must look for a link.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wren_Day

    Here I was positively delighted to see that Boxing Day is a complete shut down. No shopping.

    XO
    WWW

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