Rochester Dickensian Festival, celebrations, musings and updates…

Remembering what Christmas is about…

Christmas, which annoyingly starts earlier and earlier in the UK, is not always about being happy, joyful and full of glitz for many people. It can be a time of childhood memories, sadness and grief. Everyone, has someone they have lost and miss and unfortunately, for me, it seems a time when I remember missing family. Probably, most people feel like this, don’t they? If someone is not embracing Christmas the reasons could be some of the above and not because they are horrible. Unfortunately, the irritating commercialism, which starts after summer, doesn’t help. It is a reflective time and I think we must all remember this and be aware that not everyone is happy and joyful at Christmas all of the time. Personally, I enjoy it when it finally arrives but hate all the stuff before December. Does any of the above resonate with you?

Dickensian Christmas Festival…

Once I spotted the ad for the ‘Dickensian Christmas Festival’ it went in the diary. I’ve been feeling fed up and eager to have a day out. It is a wonderful occasion when folks dress up as Dickensian characters and partake in various activities which starts off with the morning parade.

After the parade the characters wander about amongst the crowds and mingle. Some perform mini plays, magic, readings, dances, singing and photo opportunities. Also, there are various activities aimed at children, such a Punch and Judy. It is a wonderful and great way to immerse oneself in all of these English traditions.

The parade was an exciting affair, led by the Mayor of Medway  and starting in the High Street onwards into the Esplanade and continuing up Castle Hill before finishing on the Boley Hill Stage. A fantastic site which is a brilliant festive occasion for everyone from the surrounding communities.

We enjoyed some delicious mulled wine and a mince pie, then later on, for lunch, we succumbed to a juicy burger. It was great fun to spot all the Dickensian characters and the day flew by.

CAMRA Christmas Meal…

Last Sunday, we had our CAMRA Christmas meal which was a great success. This was partly because the wives turned up and I was able to have a good natter. My only complaint, was that I didn’t like any of the beers because they were all dark, so I had wine. The establishment didn’t have any craft beers either and this surprised me, because even my local has and I think they are missing a trick. Anyway, the food was excellent and delicious and this was followed by a jolly singsong of Christmas carols and a visit by Father Christmas. The Father Christmas was very authentic I must say! After this excitement, the village tree was lit with much fanfare. Another excellent day!

Updates

The presents have now been wrapped, cards delivered so now it is time to concentrate on food. I shall try and locate the Christmas pud which is in a cupboard somewhere and at least two years old! This is the last one of the batch of puddings, so I will have to do some more next year. For the actual day, I will make some mince pies, a chocolate squidgy roll and a cake or two. Busy times!

Yes, you’ve probably guessed it, the fitness thing is not going to plan at the moment. Having said that, it could be worse. I’ve stopped eating rubbish and not drinking too much. Also, I’ve really enjoyed some invigorating walks around the surrounding countryside with the borrowed dog, Oscar.

The gym has been used four or five times a week so I don’t feel too fat but can see the weight is not dropping off either. From January the 2nd it will be all systems go though. I promise.

Promoting the blog – Instagram

My latest social media effort has been with Instagram which is fun particularly as I’m interested in photography. Photos are being posted most days and I am beginning to receive some interest now. It seems better than Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest but I will keep you informed. So do follow me if you are on Instagram.

Enjoy the festivities everyone and thank you for reading my blog, liking and commenting which is much appreciated.

Andyxxx

4 thoughts on “Rochester Dickensian Festival, celebrations, musings and updates…

  1. I’ve mixed feelings about Christmas, Andrea. Part of me thinks we need a festival which helps dispel the gloom of winter, and it does provide something cheerful for people to look forward to. On the other hand the blatant commercialism associated with Christmas is enough to put anyone off the event for life!

    We are all encouraged to have that “Perfect Christmas”; something which doesn’t really exist, except in the minds of advertisers and magazine writers. Everyone needs that new sofa from DFS – delivered in time for Christmas, along with the new dining table from Oak Furniture Land.

    Then there are all the “new” seasonal food offerings from a host of TV/celebrity chefs, all keen to promote their latest book – available in all good bookshops, in time for Christmas, of course. Table and other decorations, made by people with too much time on their hands, tops it all off, and no “Perfect Christmas” should be without these things.

    Whilst all this is going on, spare a thought for the poor souls working in retail and delivery, working insanely long hours, just so the rest of us receive that ideal Christmas gift. The same applies to hospital and emergency staff, plus those employed in the catering and hospitality industries.

    Christmas is a time for families, but even then that doesn’t always run smoothly. Call me Scrooge, but I shall be glad when it’s all over!

    On a more positive note, and keeping with the spirit of the season, last weekend’s CAMRA Christmas meal was very enjoyable. The food was good, as was the company, and the afternoon was further enhanced by the carol singing and involvement of the village community at the end.

    It’s a shame none of the beers were to your taste and perhaps a little surprising that no “craft beers” were available. Harvey’s have brought out a range of these beers, but I have never seen them on sale. It’s rather puzzling that their own pubs don’t stock them.

    Finally, thanks for the tips about Instagram. I will take a proper look at this in the New Year. Have a great Christmas. Paul.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, quite enjoy Christmas when it finally arrives but all the fuss beforehand is ridiculous now. However, I was saying to my friend only yesterday, I think it will fizzle because I can’t envisage the next generation entertaining whole family groups, like we’ve done year after year. Controversial, I know!
      Also, agree about all the workers although I’m sure some of them aren’t bothered.
      The CAMRA meal and company was great. In fact, the best Camra Christmas ‘do’ ever! Thoroughly enjoyed it. Wish we had more females come to our socials but can’t see that changing. Was in The George TW yesterday, and it was packed which is great to see. Let’s hope it continues, next year. Have a great Christmas and here’s to more blogging! Ax

      Like

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