Merry Girl: Everyone has Christmas cheer and decorations up except us.
Me: (through clenched teeth) I've got Christmas spirit -- it's just very well hidden.
I am not yet into the guilt-ridden part of the year. It's not quite December so I don't need to feel festive yet. And I have done all of my Christmas shopping which is some kind of record (attributable only to the fact that we're going with a joint present for the entire family) and to the fact that I don't have a wide circle of people whom require gifts (even if some of them might quite like them.) I refuse to feel festive and cheerful until I can't resist any longer. I think the record is the point at which I am actually wrapping presents. I am amazed that some towns have already had their carol nights and that decorations line the streets in Rosewood and Ipswich. I loved it last year when we went away in November and skipped all the stress/end of year related events. But we can't do that every year. And I'm told that running away isn't the solution.
Even though I love warm Christmases and consider them normal -- there is something about the northern Christmases that is just so much more festive. I didn't feel it so much all the years we were in the US but after our sojourn in Europe last year, I finally get the whole cold/snow/northern nostalgia thing. Maybe we should simply jettison Christmas as a celebration in Australia. Some prefer to celebrate in July when it is actually cool. I'm not so keen on the colonial overtones of that.
On the other hand, a hot Christmas illustrates the arbitrary nature of religious festivals and indeed, the whole calendar. Given Australia's long slow drift into agnosticism, maybe we should have a national competition to create an appropriate December festival. Christians can hang onto the religious calendar and everyone else can kick up their heels in a culturally appropriate way.
Some initial ideas:
A week long cricket-themed holiday (the game, not the insect).
A national beach party.
A fortnight off work with pay that doesn't count against leave entitlements.
Appreciate your family day that involves giving of gifts but no decorations.
High Summer Fest
Decorate the Moreton Bay Fig/Jacaranda tree just because...