In the West- yes I mean you; America, U.K., Europe, Australia- the festive season arrives in October and builds and builds as you are swept along in a tidal wave of “Jingle Bells” songs.
Yet, in an alternate universe across the globe, Christmas is just another day. This can be a tough time for those of us who usually celebrate with family , or indulge in once a year specialties such as mince pies, eggnog, turkey or Christmas cakes. I admit, that I was apprehensive about the dreaded day. My family was gathering across the globe, and I was stranded in China.
So…..I banded together with Westerners and we created our own Christmas oasis! I bought a mini Christmas tree, and strung up garish fairy lights, and invited the masses to my flat as long as they came bearing food. Having low expectations it turned out to be one of my best Christmas’s yet and a very pleasant day! From the depths of China we discovered Ikea’s finest mulled wine, a couple of roasted chickens and Christmas carols to soothe the background. It was a magical day…we had built an island of festiveness and merriment.
For those worried about those family holidays away from home, don’t be. The day can be as wonderful or dreadful as you make it. You can create your own islands, or go another path, it’s up to you.