Once again Christmas is upon us. Every year it’s as much of a surprise, isn’t it? Though, let’s not pretend it’s the most amazing time of the year for everyone. Lots of people are alone and it is more painful than ever around Christmas. We miss the people who aren’t with us any more because at Christmas we’re supposed to be together with our loved ones. Still, we have to think about the beautiful memories and the joy they gave us when they were around. It is a time for joy, but also for remembrance and love.
Every season and every day has it’s own pleasures and joys, but it has to be admitted that when most parts of Europe is covered in a thick blanket of snow it really is the most gorgeous. All the lights in the Christmas trees and candles in the windows reflecting in the snow against the dark night sky, can it be more idyllic? Dear old uncle Scrooge would call out ”humbug!”, close his computer (or Bob Cratchit’s I guess) and walk away in a huff, but for those of us who wants to enjoy some magic I think Christmas is the time to do so. Children and grown-ups alike. Forget the stress and the daunting prospect of the credit card bill in January. If it’s too much hard work it won’t be fun anyway. If you don’t want the Nigella Lawson Christmas Extravaganza, just pop down to the nearest supermarket and buy everything prepared. If you don’t want the stress and risk of getting in hysterics over Christmas presents, don’t buy any. Or agree on simply swapping paperbacks this year. If you’ve got kids that might be a hard one to negotiate, but at least cut down on the prezzies for the adults. Being together, having a nice meal, getting tipsy and fall asleep in front of the BBC Christmas Special is what we all want anyway, isn’t it?
When I watched the old movie Miracle on 34th Street the other day I suddenly remembered how high expectations and magic surrounded the Christmas holidays when one was a kid. Why and when did it change into being a logical and commercial, almost cynical, “happening” instead? Why is it so hard to hold on to something romantic and beautiful? One doesn’t need to believe in Santa Clause as a grown-up just to think that Christmas is great. Or does one? Why is it childish to be a romantic around Christmas, but not at other times of the year? Then it’s just plain silly if you ask some.
For me, having dragged the Christmas tree home on the Metro the other day it gave such a wonderful feeling of contentment. When the tree is decorated, the fairy lights glowing and the presents are lying underneath, I can just sit back and relax. When I look at the Christmas tree, the signature symbol of Christmas I have always loved, I feel an inner peace and warmth I simply can’t explain. I love it and hope all of you will have the opportunity to feel the same.
Mr. Freelance wishes you all a Merry Christmas and the Happiest of New years 2011! And don’t forget, Christmas is a time for relaxation and peacefulness. And a slightly excessive imbibing of champagne, I guess…