... that I love about family Christmas in Amsterdam.
- My mum’s bread sauce. Culinary event of the year. (In fact all of these could be food-related, because we all know that gluttony is the true meaning of Christmas.)
- Feeling hip and young and one of the kids through internet in-jokes with my teenage cousin.
- The Dutch style of leaving their living room curtains open to the world at large, creating evening streets lined with cosy glimpses of family life and beautiful interior design.
- Dutch style generally; women in enormous scarves cycling over bridges and bald men in round glasses walking dogs.
- Terrible dancing in the kitchen to everything from Abba to BB King.
- Aggressive and competitive word games with my aggressive and competitive family.
- Aggressive and competitive participation in celebrity University Challenge with my aggressive and competitive family.
- My mum and her sisters collapsing into unanimous incomprehensible hysteria - this year over a particularly un-PC mime of Angela Merkel during Round 3 of the hat game.
- Everyone rallying forces to demolish three bottles of Baileys in three days.
- Schokomelk with extra whipped cream and a view over the canal.
- Chaotic group Skype sessions to cousins 11 hours and two seasons away.
- A million festive tea light holders and a million dancing shadows.