the tropics!

By Zee Monodee

Yes, this is what December looks like on my island!
Hey beautiful people!

I'll admit that when the topic came out for this month's posts, I was stumped - how on earth do you happen to have holiday traditions, of Christmas and all things white and snuggly... when it's 95 degrees outside and the sun is blazing, and in December, you're usually lazing like a lizard soaking up the sun on the grainy white sand of tropical beaches? Yes, can you say 'idiosyncracy'? I could!

But then this got me thinking - holidays are not only about snow and gifts (and Chrismas sales! That's usually the time when my husband will try his best to not take me anywhere near a shop, for fear I'll empty the family wallet!).

No, holidays are about family, relationships, ties that bind, special times spent with special ones... and for this, I can totally relate.

Writing = usually not this glamourous!
I work like a fiend (if my family is to be believed!) all year long, as a writer. No, being a writer doesn't mean you sit in front of your computer, pound away at the keyboard, go from start-middle-end, send the doc off, and see it get published while you rack in the moolah - far from it, even! No, you slave away at your writing, getting it 'just right'! You send the story out for crits, and of course, you are not a cow so you crit in return for the people who are looking over your work. Then you're lucky enough to have a polished manuscript, that you send out to editors in a 'cold' submission, or if you're lucky, to your in-house editor. Then you sit down and bite your nails and rag up your cuticles, and to stop yourself from martyrising your poor fingers, you start work on another story (there's also the tiny detail of voices blaring in your head... but that's normal for a writer!). Then while you're still writing this new story, you get a contract on the submission, and then starts edits... And all through this, don't forget you also have books out, and you're working your arse off promoting them on websites, guest blogs, social media... Did I mention there's only 24 hours in a day?

But I digress - my point so far being, I tone down the writer-life madness in December, to be with my loved ones.

Now we're on holidays in the tropics - 95 degrees heat, super blazing sun, sunburn after 30 minutes out without sunblock... You get the drift. All you wanna do is either be inside with air-conditioning, or outside in that nice little breeze. And according to the blokes in my house, what would life be without good food?

Not the actual pic from my house, but basically that's what it'd look like :)
So, our holiday season in the tropics and the heat include... a BBQ that we host every year for our family (mine and hubby's - about 16 people coming to eat and have a good time at our place!). This is a tradition we started the first year we got married, and over the years, it's something everyone looks forward to. You can bet your money on the fact that there'll be marinated chicken thighs, chicken franks, lamb ribs, and beef steaks on that grill! Veggie skewers with tomato, onions, and bell pepper. 3-4 different kinds of salads, including of course, creamy coleslaw! Dessert is often chilled ras malai that I made (one of the few things I do make well, despite my undomestic goddess status!), or, if I'm beat, store-bought ice-cream.

The recipe for a good time - family, friends, food, and laughter! Whether you have that in a white Christmas setting or in blazing 100-degree heat, the magic of the holidays is all about people - the people in your life...

Hope you all have a lovely holiday season, peeps!


From Mauritius with love,


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  1. Sounds like a delicious time!
    I remember thinking about moving to Mauritius on whim after high school graduation. I stumbled upon it when I was doing a small report on places other than France that have an official language of French. Looks like a beautiful place and I am glad you shared this with us!

    The Wanderfull Traveler


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