Good Grief Charlie Brown, the holidays are upon us once again. Tell me it's not so, because I only just recovered from celebrating last Christmas! I'm currently faced with a mountain of presents I have to wrap and deliver; plus there are a plethora of last-minute items I still have to shop for. I'm too young for all of this!
And, of course, coming from the UK but now living in the USA, this is the time of year when I have to explain just what "Boxing Day" is all about. The simple answer is that it's the day after Christmas day. Folks in the UK may spend this day either at home moaning about how much they ate the day before; alternatively, they may use this day to wander around dropping in on friends to say "Hi" (and to moan about how much they ate the previous day).
As to the origin of the name "Boxing Day," it has nothing to do with fighting. In fact, I've heard a number of different theories, but the one that I favor is that in the dim and distant past, Christmas Day was observed by the Lord of the Manor and his family; all of his servants and household staff had to work as usual. However, the day following Christmas Day, the Lord and his family were reduced to eating "cold cuts." Everyone else had the day off; and during the day the Lord traveled around his estate distributing presents to his serfs. The presents were packaged in boxes; hence the name "Boxing Day." (Is any of this true? Who knows? If you've heard something different, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell me about it.)
In the meantime, HAPPY HOLIDAYS to all, and the very best to you and yours for the New Year!