Christmas! The most magical of weeks of the year. The last week of the year. That week when you stress like a madman assembling potential gifts for the people you love and care for, then wake up with a headache on Christmas Eve (the day we officially celebrate here in Sweden) and spend all the time you would rather be spending with those same people packing those presents, getting down to the living room just to realize the old folks are helplessly glued to the TV with no will for socializing (and to think they were the ones that saw to it I didn't go down that same path!), going back up even though you have no more presents to pack, sending out some last-minute NG greetings, getting called down to dinner and... there the fun began!
The 22nd and 23rd were hectic days. First day of the week was my final work day: present delivery and then a looong walk home, past a supermarket for last minute shopping, through barren landscapes with recent snowfall trampled down as a soggy paste over the pavement, eventually a watery paste, eventually water, eventually it started to rain. I spent the 23rd at home, feeling incredibly busy but probably not doing much at all.
The 24th was 90% preparation, and 10% euphoria, packing up random re-usable packages in various sizes and piling their contents: a mixture of edibles (like Mango chips, dragon fruit and dark chili chocolate), socks, scratch cards and rare not with bigger promise on the rickety TV table - a keepsake from Costa Rica - one giant piece of polished wood (now cracked by the change of climate) sturdied by four wobbly legs. The wrapping paper piled high underneath it. The presents by the pine slowly faded away, revealing a worn wooden floor and a round rug with red and white fringe. We took turns picking up random presents and handing them out, and when it was all done I scourged the floor for more, but it was gone. Nothing under the rug either. Maybe some small forgotten gift will turn up in a closet in time for summer.
We opened presents till after midnight, till the snow started falling outside - all the while munching away on home-made snacks, and the day after I woke up with a... big smile! Mid day. Twelve. After the most refreshing sleep of the year! Since then I've been polishing up old posts, going through old art, finishing old audio, taking routine walks in the all but routine much colder, brighter and wonderful winter world outside - the snow squeaking under our feet as we move along. A Very Merry Christmas it was after all, despite insanely craving preparations and pre-present consumption craze.
Soon the New Year's upon us. It's a time for finishing up the old, starting new and meeting the fireworks with resolve and resolution! Aftermath post for resolutions of past years coming up soon, and maybe I can get some more old drafts polished and posted before I'm supposed to start on a blank slate, as I should every morning: let go of all expectations, and live life one moment at a time.