Juletide is over. The sun has turned to Iinch its way northwards, spring ahead, and we have all celebrated the arbitary date allocated for jesus's birth in the Julian Calendar. Celebrations, high times. I hate it all more and more each year.
It begins now in October with all the long shelf life, high sugar content crap. It all just clutters up the shops, even blocking fire-escapes and impeding progress for a decent ordinary shopping. Don't forget the carrots, an extra milk just in case. November comes the jingles on radio and in shops, the decorations in the shopping centres with the leaves still swirling around in the streets or being washed down the gutters.
Then here in Norway, the 'julebord' season begins for firms and employees, ever earlier it seems, 12 nov i heaerd of one. Self appointed cheer leader bosses stand up with glee and lead singing, sketches, half cut speaches. Annual results are soemtimes presented when insider trading is not an issue. People drink too much. As with all office parties, when the free drink runs out, so do the young crowd and with them the atmosphere. The walking dad are left who are too drunk and old to get into night clubs. Grudges and inverted snobbery bubble up.Fights break out. Long term crushes between 50 somethings starved of affection at ho,me, flourish into cheek to a very cosery seatimng arrangement, cheek flirting, a stolen kiss and boil over with the flame going out with a misjudged grope or indecent proposal. The best ones are actually the unofficial departmental nights out well into december, when everyone is pleased to have a fun night out with a choice of food and drink, served
November is not too bad otherwise, and in fact i like being in the mood for buying presents before St. Andrew's. It gets it out the way. I can be really smug and relaxed later on, buying extra nice bits and pieces for the stockings and so on. I used to sound out the kids gifts, but now they have so many of the biggies that kids want these days that we listen to them, and need to take the wee man out into the toy shops a few times before betting on bang for buck and a gauranteed delight on face.
This year i stuck my head too much behind the camera in trying to capture that perfect moment on their faces that i felt like i was covering someone else's family. I hate that too. Got a few killer shots though.
We were spoiled for white christmas's four in a row, now we have had three without and this year the wee bitty bitnwe got after jule may be about all. It is pretty cool to go into town for a sleigh ride and buy some gløgg at the market, butbthisnyear neither. Just a wind swept harbour side, rainnfollowed by freezing nights.
Every year i hate myaself for not doing that cold evening at the soup kitchen or the charity bake, when i shouild have taken my entire middle class family and confront them with pyshzophrenic substance abusers or incontinent so they learn christian values. But through the year they do their bit at school and in their own little waffle sales. I pnderr poverty and those families gettng salvation army hand outs. There is no one who goes hungy here, and no child who goes without a present if drugs, alcohol or major psychological problems arent in the picture, but apparently 40 families in our town got help. Mostly assylum seekers who mostly dont believe in jesus.
Personally i never get anything I want for christmas. My mum is getting old and buys two sizes too small for me. My soon to be ex usually either pays for something in a shop, in november when i was going to buy it for myself. Since 1980 when måy scaletrix lane changer set didnt work, and dad had passed away earlier in the year, there has been a connotation of missing him and not really getting what i want.
However on the other hand, I love to give and spend time on things like photobooks for my family, and the best skis for my daughter every other year. This year it felt a little less special. A little worn thin, but still sparking on. I did a couple of good deeds too.
At a low point in worrying about money and where I will be next in life, and how badly the kids behave we did get some human kindness as a lovely surprise ... We went to eat out at our friends restaurant and they said it was on the house. Also the food was the best they have ever made.