This past Christmas season I started the tradition of decorating my own tree. I
pilfered borrowed a spare small white tree from my home in Savannah and smuggled took it up to Athens, where I live most of the year. After assembling it, fluffing up its hopelessly scraggly branches, and decorating it with all my ornaments, I realized I had a problem.
It was duck-heavy. Literally.
For some reason, 80% of the ornaments I had on the tree were figures of ducks or ducklings. But the biggest problem with the tree was the lack of a tree topper. Keeping with unintentional theme, I made do by tying a large Aflac duck plush toy to the top of the Christmas tree with a rubber band. The unfortunate outcome was a sharply leaning, tremulous tree that quivered with each passing step.
I knew I could do better. I needed to diversify.
So after Christmas I went on a determined hunt for discounted ornaments. I stopped by World Market, and browsing the clearance shelves when I came across this aluminum beauty:
Though I could find no English other than “soft drink” on the can to tell me what this thing was, I was intrigued by the barrel-rolling goats on the design. So I bought it and brought it to my lair.
After some internet sleuthing, I figured out that this was a traditional rye-bread soft drink from Lithuania. It’s actually a beer brewed from rye bread with a low alcohol content of 2.4%. I’m a big fan of craft beer, but in this case, I had no idea what to expect. So bottoms up!
My first impression was that the thing smelled like wet bread. Not very appetizing. But when I tentatively took a sip, I realized that the drink bore no relation to its smell whatsoever. More of a soft drink than a beer, the kvass was sweet and malty with a nice rye aftertaste. It’s been a while since I had a soft drink made without high fructose corn syrup, and this kvass made me realize how cloying its American counterparts can be. My verdict? Would drink again.
Also, I ended up buying more duck ornaments- a pink one and a blue one. So in a way you could say I achieved some sort of balance with my Christmas tree. Maybe.