How do you spend your Christmas Day?

By Chris Cornford Dec 23, 2020

We all have our own ways of making Christmas Day special and the IW Observer has been speaking to a few Island residents to find out how they spend the day.
First off is Ian Mac, founder of Vectis Radio and Station Manager, who tells us about his perfect Christmas Day. He said: “When I was a nipper, I always used to have the turkey leg. It was, and still is, my favourite – but we never have roast turkey now. We have another favourite, roast lamb on Christmas Eve and the leftovers make a lamb curry on Christmas Day. This is all washed down with dandelion and burdock; the alcoholic variety usually goes down well.

“Presents are shared after breakfast which is hopefully smoked salmon and scrambled egg if I’ve been a good boy. If not its lumpy porridge – I was bad last year!
“I don’t get involved with the clearing up as I am told I don’t do it right. But I do ask if I can help and am told ‘No thanks darling – keep out the bloody way’.
“I listen to Vectis radio because obviously they’ll be playing Band-Aid, Wizard and Slade and all the Christmas favourites.
“Best present ever is easy. I’ve got an iPad this Christmas but my wife doesn’t know yet. Last year I got a foot massage, but I hate anyone touching my feet – that’s why I’m taking control of the situation this year.”

The most surprising response to our questions concerned the tigers at the Isle of Wight Zoo. Yes, it’s true. They do actually celebrate it. On Christmas Day they are usually pretty tired. Definitely not because of hangovers, but because so many people send them stimulation enrichment presents. These consist of puzzle games involving things like scents (including lavender) and sheep’s fleeces, all of which the tigers adore. The animals take part in some pretty strenuous activities in order to reach these popular treats. So, on Christmas Day they spend most of the time in their own room, loafing on the sofa. Each of the five tigers, all rescued from circuses around the world, actually have their own room with a sofa. Normally, they eat red meat, a key part of any tiger’s diet, but at Christmas they are also allowed a turkey drum stick, which is an enormous treat. Then it’s back to lazing on the sofa again – but they aren’t really interested in the Queen’s speech.
Tom Dunford is the man behind the Compton Bay monolith, which attracted world-wide media interest. Tom started his career as a professional footballer before branching out into furniture design. Now he concentrates on building outdoor meeting pods for various businesses, large and small.

Christmastime to Tom is part of the natural rhythm of the year that humans need in order to self-evaluate and feel calmer. He said the best part is taking a break from decision making. Could he mean decisions such as, “Will there be another monolith on the Island and if so, where?”
Mostly he likes to eat a lot, drink plenty of beer and watch a massive amount of football. Isn’t that many men’s preferred option?
Marina Ignarski is an artist and designer living on the Island. She undertakes illustration commissions including greetings cards and wedding stationery.

Marina has taken on many commissions recently including illustrating two children’s books, due to appear on the shelves early in 2021. Over the festive season she has been designing a collection of items, including scarves, masks and bags, and has also been busy illustrating handmade Christmas cards. Marina teaches her many skills at senior school level and over this Christmas she plans on turning her artistic skills to festive cooking, to include her signature tarragon sauce and lavender creme brulé. She is looking forward to decorating the tree while drinking mulled wine and enjoying time with family.

However you plan to spend your Christmas, the IW Observer team wish all our readers health and happiness.