Fond Memories of Christmas
past came to mind as I slowly stirred in bed this morn' accompanied by the not so distant sound of the gurgling percolator in the kitchen.
Two distinct ones flowed readily to mind.
One, while I was living at the ranch in the Okanagan when we happened to have one of the most magical snowfalls I can remember for any Christmas Eve.
I was (practically) isolated from it all at my cottage at the end of the road; no one came around to clean it.
I had three dinner guests for whom a sumptuous turkey dinner with all the trimmings was in the works, to be topped off with a lot of my favorite traditional Hungarian seasonal sweets.
Despite the knee-deep snow everyone arrived without delay. We dinned and visited by the glow of many candles and the view of the pristine glistening snow by the moonlight.
It was one the gentlest of Christmas Eves I can remember.
The following day, on the 25th, I was a guest at the main house. A total antithesis, it was the closest I ever came to a traditional (“Hallmark”) North American family celebration. I can still feel 1998 in the air; this one gave a whole new meaning to caroling and pudding – with its also unforgettably exquisite brandy sauce... mmmmmmm!
The second one to come to mind, was one that my mother and I were going to spend at my place – much to her dislike – as she did not have any other choice… :)
Sometime in the afternoon of the 24th (which is when I like to celebrate, following the "continental" tradition), in the middle of my preparations, one of my closest friends phoned for an extra last minute greeting.
Upon realizing we were going to be “alone”, she insisted we join her and her family that evening.
They were a “mixed couple”. She, a South American Catholic, him, an European Jew.
Can’t remember which year it was, but Hanukah and Christmas fell on the same date.
Thirteen adults of “mixed” faith sat at the dinning room table and about a half dozen children at the kitchen one…
There was magic in the air as both traditions and cultures merged, by the time we arrived at dessert and the warmest of toasts, we were truly one…
It always, always, pains me to hear yet again-anothertime-we-are-still-fighting-over-religion, as we are caught up in our differences instead of embracing our commonalities.
Many years ago I was gifted with a tiny menorah. It has since become part of “my tradition” to also light Hanukah candles at Christmas…
May you all have a gentle, peaceful and loving holiday season that carries on throughout the year
PS.: Posted some of the newswest pieces of jewellery @ www.AngelDustCreations.blogspot.com
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