It is easy for me to look forward to Christmas. I love the holidays, the chill in the air and the warmth of family gatherings, friends sharing traditions, and the lights and music. I love the hope and promise of good will. For a while it may feel like Christmas is a long way off; hundreds of days away. And when we begin to count only a handful of days, when Advent calendars come out and paper chains are constructed, I get a wonderful feeling of anticipation and pleasure.
The days after Christmas come without fanfare or anticipation, and they come as a bit of a shock to me. What? It's the 27th? Already? Normally I would be looking at our Christmas tree and dreading the dismantling of our once glorious symbol of cheer. Poor tree... this year it was hurled over the balcony on the 23rd, because it looked like self-igniting kindling. So, now it is time to think about the new year, and New Year's Eve. Dick Clark's invitation must have been delayed in the mail, so we will dream up our own special celebration, maybe something with sparkling cider and ham. But it seems to have come too soon, and I feel caught off guard. So much energy and effort went into Christmas and accomplishing all the magic entailed in the Santa event, that I feel as though we deserve a week of nonevents and a halt to the passage of time. We ought to be able to gather our thoughts, and have ample hours for finding room in our home for the new books, toys and gadgets.
Wow. It's the 27th. There are only 4 days left in the year 2004. Will I make a new year's resolution? Will we stay awake until midnight, or pass out at 9 p.m., and then wake-up again with Maria at 3 a.m.? And what's to come in the new year? I hope for peace, and out of town guests, maybe some resolve about where we will live, and a clean garage.
363 days 'til Christmas.
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