Views #933 | Intermediate 5

Sharron's Christmas

Sharron talks about how she feels during the Christmas season.

Dai: So Christmas is coming around the corner. How do you feel about that?

Sharron: I love Christmas. I love the time with the family, the time off work to relax and enjoy each other's company and just time at home with everyone.

Dai: So, what do you .... what's like a traditional Christmas for you then?

Sharron: Well, the build-up is a bit of a nuisance really. It's a lot of money, but it's good fun and it's great. The end result, Christmas morning, watching everybody opening the presents that I've bought and things, but, yeah, a traditional Christmas would be rushing around Christmas Eve getting all the last minute things. Probably up till very late, wrapping presents, and then up early Christmas morning, opening presents, a family visit to see our daughter opening her presents as well, and then it's normally shared around some of the family. We do a different Christmas dinner every year. Either we ...

Dai: Christmas dinner? What kind of ... ?

Sharron: Right! Christmas dinner back home is a big roast turkey and all the trimmings: stuffing, vegetables ...

Dai: Stuffing?

Sharron: Stuffing. It's like herbs and bread crumbs and onions and things. All made up and you stuff it under the skin of the turkey and when the turkey roasts it cooks in there as well. It's really, really tasty. So we have sort of a family meal and one year we'll go to one of the parent's houses or they'll come to us. We just change it round every year. And then normally, it's sort of a lazy afternoon after we've eaten far too much, and watching some of the traditional British television: The Queen's speech at 3 o'clock every Christmas Day.

Dai: So the Queen gives a speech?

Sharron: Yeah. Tells everybody how her year has been and what she thinks Britain has achieved in the last twelve months and how she thinks things are going to go for the next twelve months and it's on for about twenty minutes I suppose. Not everybody watches it. Sometimes people, after their large lunch, have fallen asleep in the chair by the time it's on the TV, so ...

Dai: Right.

Sharron: But Christmas night then, it's normally cold turkey sandwiches, pickled onions, crisps.

Dai: Crisps? Like ...

Sharron: Like ...

Dai: Potato chips?

Sharron: Potato chips, yeah, sorry, potato chips, yeah. We call them crisps back home so ...

Dai: OK.

Sharron: Sit in front of the TV again. It's just a generally family time.

Dai: Sounds pretty lazy.

Sharron: It is. Very lazy. Boxing Day then is ...

Dai: Boxing Day?

Sharron: Yeah, now Boxing Day is the day after Christmas Day.

Dai: So the 26th?

Sharron: The 26th of December. Saint Steven's Day, but we have another day's holiday then so ...

Dai: Why is it called Boxing Day?

Sharron: I haven't got a clue. Not a clue.

Dai: Think it's cause everyone gets rids of their boxes?

Sharron: Could be. After all the Christmas gifts, yeah. But we generally have a busier day the next day. There's a lot of sport activities going on where we live. In Temby, which is a local seaside town, they have a big Boxing Day swim, which is unheard of in the winter. Nobody goes in the sea much in the summer, where we live.

Dai: Right, it must be really cold.

Sharron: Very cold.

Dai: Like, what would that be in degrees?

Sharron: Oh, I don't know, but people dress up and run in the sea for charity. People give donations for money and it's all in a good cause and it's a bit of fun. But there's also football matches and rugby matches and things.

Dai: So you generally have a good time.

Sharron: Yeah, most people go out on Boxing Day. It's a more active day than Christmas Day. Christmas Day is the day where most people tend to stay in and be with the family and Boxing Day we will go out and meet up with friends generally.

Learn vocabulary from the lesson

the build-up

Well, the build-up is a bit of a nuisance really.

'The build up' is a period of planning or promotion before a big event.  Notice the following:

  1. There was a lot of build-up to the wedding and then it was over.
  2. There is often a lot of build-up for any Leo DiCaprio movie.


The traffic is a bit of a nuisance.

A nuisance is someone or something that makes us a little angry.  Notice the following:

  1. Mosquitoes are such a nuisance in summer.
  2. The noisy child was such a nuisance, his mother finally let him eat ice-cream for dinner.

not a clue

I haven't got a clue why it is called Boxing Day.

The phrase 'I haven't got a clue' simply means 'I don't know'.  Notice the following:

  1. I don't have a clue as to why he did not come.
  2. I could not answer the question. I didn't have a clue.

unheard of

They have a swim which is unheard of in winter.

Something that is unheard of is very unusual.  Notice the following:

  1. It is unheard of for rich people to give away all their money.
  2. In the 18th century, It was unheard of for men have short hair.

a good cause

People give donations and it's all in a good cause.

An event or organization that helps people is a good cause.  Notice the following:

  1. Helping the homeless is a good cause.
  2. People gave to the charity because it was a good cause.

Vocabulary Quiz

build-up • nuisance • a clue
 unheard of • good cause
  1. I don't think she has what she is doing.
  2. Wearing shorts in the winter is basically .
  3. It makes me feel good to donate to a .
  4. The bees were quite a at the fair.
  5. There was a lot of before the concert.
Answer the following questions about the interview.

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