Our apartment community has done parties for many major holidays and Christmas was no exception.
As it was a bit colder, this was not a pool party, but rather took place in the club house and the outside areas around it. Aside from the obvious socializing, there was an ugly sweater competition, local Christmas food in the form of tamales and very unlocal non-Christmas specific food in the form of a lobster roll food truck.
The food truck was from Cousins Maine Lobster and was very good. I hadn’t had lobster since we were in Maine in July 2015. This was arguably more authentic as it wasn’t from Mcdonalds even being thousands of miles from Maine. I did go for the Connecticut roll though as I prefer warm butter to mayo any day. Chris didn’t get any lobster as he doesn’t like most seafood due to thinking most of them look about as appetizing as this:
Tamales were completely new to both of us. Even though we’ve both eaten a fair amount of Mexican food in our lives, these seem much more localized, while things like fajitas and even chimichangas have found their way across the Atlantic and certainly to the whole of the US.
Tamales appear to be quite old in this part of the world. They date back to between 8000 and 5000 BC in Mesoamerica and were consumed by all the major pre-Colombian civilizations: Aztec, Mayan, Toltec and Olmeca. They can contain many things, but the point of commonality appears to be containing masa, a corn based dough, and being held together by a corn husk.
In addition to continuing to be a traditional food in Mexico, they have taken up a strong Christmas connection in Arizona.
As for ugly sweaters, Chris and I do not currently have any sweaters with us in the state of Arizona. I do have one sweater-ish cardigan, but that’s as close as I could get as it has not, at least in my opinion, been sweater weather yet, so I haven’t bought any since we lived in the UK. Chris doesn’t even believe it’s long trousers weather. He is determined to carry on wearing shorts and t-shirts year round, which is fair enough. Working from home, he didn’t see the point in buying a wardrobe that would be mildly useful 2 months a year. The biggest concession he’s made is occasionally wearing socks and closed toed shoes instead of sandals.
Here is the video of our fast taste of tamales and all the ugly sweaters: