It began in early November, slowly and subtly, but before the month was even halfway through it was everywhere – Christmas. Carols and songs piped through every store I visited, decorations and gift ideas in my face at every turn and Christmas foods pushed in supermarkets as if they were everyday staples.
You see I am not a great fan of this time of the year. Like many in the community, separated from family and without a partner, it just doesn’t seem to click. In fact, I am one of those people who would be the first to announce, ‘I don’t like Christmas’. Indeed, my last family Christmas was exactly forty years ago. Look, I always have a nice day spent with friends and other Christmas orphans feasting on yummy food and working my way through the offerings of almost every champagne house, but really, I’m happy to see December 26.
I reckon I’m an expert at looking into the faces of people I pass in the street and picking those of the same view. I would go as far as to say if a referendum were held next Saturday and the question, ‘Do you like Christmas – yes or no?’, was put to the people, then I’m not convinced you would get a majority of ‘yes’ votes.
That said, it’s December and Christmas is overflowing from the shops onto the streets, just like the last throws of an election campaign in the lead up to polling day. And it was in this scene that I was unexpectedly reminded of what Christmas is all about.