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A very sunny Christmas

Christmas drinks by the pool

Christmas drinks by the pool

Sure, for most people this holiday season is associated with snow, winter tires and the occasional frostbite that turns your ears purple red. Coming from Sweden and Russia, we have been there, done that. Dragging the Christmas tree while trying to balance on the slippery pavement making pirouettes that even Baryshnikov would be impressed with. Freezing one’s butt off, installing the Christmas lights on the house. Trying to de-frost the car lock with matches that are falling out of the already frozen hands. Hell, absolute hell!

Well, this year we said: no more five pairs of socks and six sweaters, no more boots and furry hats! We want hardcore warmth, sun caressing our backs while lying by the pool sipping on a tropical drink with real tropical fruits in it. We want our clothing options along the following lines: today to be a t-shirt or not to be. Cold weather is out. Basta! Palm trees and little umbrellas in our cocktails are in!

So, how did we celebrate Christmas this year? We ended up sitting on a terrace at the Salobre Golf Clubhouse in Gran Canaria, drinking Champagne and watching the sunset. Wearing t-shirts and big smiles, chatting away, happy as two clams. Sounds boring? Maybe, but sure beats trying to get the heater on in -30 degrees weather.

Blogger’s ode to Christmas


When the snow outside the window falls,

Santa’s little helper eats his last meatballs.

Washing it down with one Coke Light,

this was one hell of a X-mas night.


– But our blog makes the world go bright,

and miracles do happen on Christmas night.

So if you want to be Santa’s favorite man,

read Samandthedunes as much as you can!


– Now what is the sense of this rhyming joke,

when all I want is a regular Coke!

– But if you want X-mas to give you the most,

don’t forget to read every single blog-post!


-Oh, how low can you bloggers sink,

when I want to rest with my little drink.

A few drops of whiskey and a splash of lime,

please stop bothering me with your stupid rhyme.

Christmas going up in smoke?

Last year we celebrated Christmas in Agadir feasting on oysters and champagne in the Sofitel Hotel. This year we are in a bit of a dilemma: obviously, we are in Gran Canaria (hey, a 40 minute flight, how can we say no) but suddenly we realized we have no clue where to go.

Alex suggests: SushiMex restaurant (yes, it does sound funny but they serve some awesome dumplings and Alex, coming from Russia, can’t get enough). Then off to listen to some cover oldies at a bar next door that he likes and a clientele he feels kindred with, bottom line, his age group or a bit older. Hanna is not really thrilled – seeing Alex and several dozen half-drunk guys trying to re-live their youth shouting along to “Smoke on the Water” is not her idea of a perfect Christmas.

Hanna suggests: get the corkscrew out early, pop the champagne, lounge at the pool, eat a late lunch at Golf Salobre and then get comfortable in our villa and listen to some Christmas music (Hanna REALLY likes that stuff, no joke). After a few annoying melodies, Alex is promised a short visit to a bar (Boy, that of course will happen, won’t it? Alex is not betting his wine cellar). Not to mention the bar suggested does not offer live rock ‘n’ roll music.

So, what are we going to do? Stay tuned and you will find out all the gory details in our next posting.

PS. we forgot to mention that Sam opted for a separate vacation this year; he is currently being pampered by friends, fed home-made cooking and taken on long walks. He doesn’t call or send any e-mails. That son of a bitch!

Alex, this is cozy, isn't it?

Alex, this is cozy, isn’t it?

Santa Terminator

Lussekatt buns for breakfast.

I woke up at seven this morning, still groggy witnessing Hanna entering the bedroom trying to balance a tray filled with buns, two cups of tea and candles. Sam was jumping around her legs, happy as…only Sam can be.

Yep, it’s the 13th of December and that day of the year when Swedes celebrate St. Lucy’s Day.

I have no clue what this whole thing is all about but don’t get me wrong,  I do get a kick out of starting my morning having a Lussekatt bun washed down with some Earl Grey tea (a bit too early to hit the glogg).

Off course, we ended up singing “Santaaaaaa Luuuciiiaaaa…,” with Sam humming along (it is really annoying but I actually noticed that he does have a better voice than I do).

Anyway, this is our plan for the evening:

  1. Cook some glogg (mulled wine),
  2. Heat up some more of these fantastic Lussekatt buns,
  3. Cozy up on the coach,
  4. Watch the Terminator.

(Although Hanna hasn’t been fully briefed on point four yet).

“I’ll be back…for one of those Lussekatt buns”

A So Good Christmas!

Michelin star level cuisine, live music in a night club ambiance with champagne by the gallon, roses  on every table and an air of exclusivity. Voilà, welcome to Christmas dinner at So Good restaurant in the Sofitel Hotel in Agadir.


The clientele is French (except for the Sam and the dunes team) and the food speaks the same language. The wine is Moroccan. A discreet bass in the background performs Christmas songs while you feast on poached oyster, foie gras on ginger bread with fig chutney (that would fit in comfortably at a State reception) and roasted blue lobster. One small note, though: the menu was perfection, but there was just too much of it (when you have eight dishes coming one after the other, your taste buds tend to start screaming “help!).  Roses

So Good was fully booked for Christmas as most other establishments in Sofitel – a mecca for the glamourous and the haute jeans crowd from Paris, Cannes and Nice this time of the year. Before dinner, a welcome drink was offered in the lobby while an African band was drumming it away.

An enormous Christmas tree reminded us all that the holiday season just started and it was time to kick off the celebrations, which we did with a vengeance. The night flew by like a meteor with guests departing around midnight, or after (depending on one’s stamina and resolve).

The happy, if tired, faces at breakfast the next morning said what needed to be said: This was one So Good Christmas!

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