Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Eve

I'm looking forward to this afternoon. Dad and I get Christmas Eve with my G'pa (the other half of the family gets him Christmas day). We make a huge Christmas dinner for him (and any other of our side of the family who can make it) and us, we also enjoy a good meal.

It's the best part of Christmas for me. I've lost a lot of the childhood magic that comes with the season somewhere along the way. But there are several things I still enjoy. I love the music. It's the only time of the year when I know all of the words. I love walking around down town on Christmas day and how everyone smiles at you when you walk by. It's like we are all sharing this strange secrete that today is international smile to strangers day. But this might just be a Canadian thing, they didn't do that in England when I spent Christmas there.

Then, there is spending Christmas away from home, especially the first time; away from family and loved ones. It's a strange feeling. It's sad, and in a way freeing. It's a statement of independence. For those of us who are raised with this holiday, it's also immensely depressing to be away from home for Christmas. Even more so than the traditional re-ignition of petty family squabbles.

I worked at a Hostel for several years. It was great place to work, all in all. Christmas at the Hostel is an important event for me. Even though I don't work there any more we still spend Christmas day there. My dad and I and anyone else we know who is away from home for the holidays walk down to the hostel some time after lunch. We peal potatoes and yams and Brussels sprouts. We help cook dinner and then when the time comes, we sit down and enjoy it with all those who are travelling. It's a wonderful meal and as you can imagine, there are often many people who don't traditionally celebrate Christmas. There is a huge variety of religious backgrounds and beliefs, but we all sit down together, enjoy a home cooked meal, and talk about any old thing.

I don't know if they still have this slogan, but I think it's very apt:

Peace through understanding

When I have Christmas dinner at the Hostel, I can't imagine why or how anyone could do those horrible things the news tells us happen every day. At this dinner, it reaffirms the understanding that people are people. At the heart of it, we are all the same and we are all different. It is the differences that makes people more the same. Yeah, philosophy drivvel perhaps. But it's true.

Happy holidays everyone.

1 comment:

Josiane said...

Merry Christmas, Raven! It sounds like you had nice plans for celebrating, I hope you had a great time! I also hope you're doing fine and will be able to enjoy your day tomorrow at Knotty by Nature. Have fun!