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Festivity, Food and Fun

Written by Jagyoseni Mandal, posted on Friday, December 4, 2020

Jagyoseni Mandal, a first-year doctoral candidate in History, describes the many festive events celebrated at Christ Church in the final weeks of the term.

Photograph of Jagyoseni Mandal in front of the Peckwater Quad Christmas treeFestivities bring people together. At a time when social distancing has become the norm, Christ Church went out of its way to keep the spirits of the festive season alive for both students who are new and those who have returned.

On Friday, November 20, the Christmas tree in Peckwater Quad was switched on at 4:30 pm followed by Christmas carol singing. As a fresher witnessing this for the first time, it felt magical—although my seniors have confirmed that it feels equally magical every year. Even though it wasn’t possible to gather around the Christmas tree in person, the event was live streamed. Now, whenever you walk into Peckwater Quad or out of the Library, you feel that Christmas is just around the corner!

Nothing quite gets you into the festive mood like food does. Before the lighting of the Christmas tree, mince pies and mulled wine were served to students at the Marquee following Covid protocols.

Peckwater Quad Christmas TreeThere were two special dinners on the occasion of Diwali. The one I attended served Indian classics such as Pakoras and Sooji kheer. The Hall stairs too were lit up to celebrate Diwali. Last Thursday there was a Thanksgiving dinner in Hall, the McKenna Room, and the Freind Room. On Wednesday there was special Christmas dinner right before the end of term to get everyone in the Christmas spirit. This was a great pick-me-up in the midst end of term stress. (And the crême brulée was out of this world!) Apart from these special occasions, the bi-weekly afternoon Brain Strain Teas in the Marquee organized by the Welfare team have helped to ensure that the recent lockdown wasn’t too difficult.

As we approach the end of Michaelmas Term in this very strange year, memories of celebrating all these festivals remind me that one of the most rewarding experiences of being in Christ Church has been the exposure to different cultures even in a year that has been like no other. We are very grateful indeed for the efforts of the staff and students of Christ Church who have made all this possible for us.