News at New Year from B.M. Allsopp

December 31, 2016

My Family Christmas 2016

 

I’ve hugely enjoyed Christmas this year – the first in three years when all three children have been in Sydney to gather around our table for an extended Australian lunch of cold turkey, ham and salads, with hot Christmas pudding in honour of my Yorkshire-born grandmother and her luscious recipe. If alchemy exists, it’s in this pudding, where eight hours’ steaming transmutes such humble ingredients as stale bread, stout, suet and carrots into culinary gold.

 

Christmas in Fiji

 

What of Christmas in Fiji? As a country where the ethnic Fijian majority share a deep Christian faith, this is a religious festival and little commercialised. Town dwellers try to return to ancestral villages for Christmas, bringing practical gifts such as fabric, garments, soap and groceries. My husband and I were honoured to be invited to a village in the Yasawa Islands one Christmas. After church in the morning, we sat on mats beneath a thatched feasting shelter, pictured here.

 

A generous spread of food was laid out on a tablecloth metres-long, including traditional festive dishes of earth-baked chicken and fish marinated in lime juice and coconut cream, to tinned supermarket goods. Everyone was happy, in a mood to celebrate the return of family to the island as well as the birth of Jesus.

 

 

 

My best wishes to you all for New Year and 2017. May you enjoy good health, may you take steps on a new path you’ve been dreaming of, may you count your blessings. I’m so grateful for your interest in my book and I’m looking forward to sharing more snippets of Fiji with you next time. As 2016 draws to a close, I’ll leave you with my husband’s shot of a dramatic Fiji sunset. 

 

 

I would love to answer any questions from readers about Fiji, or indeed about my book. Just leave me a message on www.bmallsopp.com or email me on bernadette@bmallsopp.com. I look forward to hearing from you!

 

If you know someone who’s been to Fiji or other South Pacific islands, or who would like to do so, or is simply a fan of crime fiction set in exotic places, please forward them this post.

 

 

again, all the best for 2017,

 

 

 

Bernadette

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