We returned home to find every folding table in the compound stretched out into one long dinner table adorned with candles and fake snow. The dinner crew had spent all day cooking, many of the dishes representative of their respective cook's place of origin. Sauerkraut with sausage, minced brandy pies, molé and some sort of Mexican salad, and then the more familiar ham and potatoes. We even got a small glass of eggnog and some damn good Chilean wine. It was a hell of a feast. Toasts, revelry, the whole bit.
Afterwards was Secret Santa gift-giving around the Christmas palm tree. The boys and I took our shirts off and did the dishes, and I retired early.