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danouche
danouche
danouche
Tuesday, December 22nd, 2015 11:52 pm
On Celebrating Christmas

Christmas as we know it is, and always has been, a time of extravagance. From the three kings visiting the Little Baby Jesus with their rare gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh to my erstwhile goddaughter with so many gifts under the tree she got bored opening them.

Origins and religion notwithstanding, the yule time is about celebrating that which is a gift of life in an effort to connect us to our fellow man. From the Germanic Pagans through the English Victorians via the Roman Catholics, our traditions are a collection of rituals that were relevant to the times and adapted through the ages. Rather than blindly following what we think should be done I would suggest, as always, to consider what is important to ourselves as individuals and why, and practice that which enriches us and those around us.

Why roasted nuts and fresh tangerines? Because in an overcast island nation, they are rare and precious. Large birds? Meat is a luxury. Salmon? Hard to come by when fishing is the only source. Christmas pudding? Sugar, dried fruit, almonds and booze and spices gathered from the far corners of the world. Champagne? Well....

Let us not ingest all this for the sake of it -- unless that's your thing -- instead contemplate what is special to you. Don't have nuts in a bowl that go to waste. If Twiglets are the taste of your childhood Christmases, scatter them everywhere in your home.

For me, it's aged French red wine I need a very good excuse to buy. It's extravagant or seasonal meat with a nod to the Victorians, like this year's partridge or dry aged rib of beef or a fatty goose stuffed with brandy-soaked prunes. It's Champagne before noon and salmon I've cured myself.

I appreciate every card I receive and display them in my flat; handwriting and postage stamps are a rare display of effort in the digital age. I give gifts that the other person should have, not to fill the space under the tree. I spend time with people who are important in my life.

I've been blessed with amazing Christmases the last few years. We've all experienced the wonder of Christmas Day as a child. It is up to us to carry the Magic into adulthood.

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Current Location: sofa
Current Music: Liz Story - The Gift

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