Christmas Comes To An End
The decorations have come down over the weekend and the Christmas season has finally come to an end for us. It has been quite memorable and special in it’s own way; new city, new faces, new experiences. We decided to stay in Hong Kong, partly because this place has a lot of Christmas vibe (though […]
The decorations have come down over the weekend and the Christmas season has finally come to an end for us. It has been quite memorable and special in it’s own way; new city, new faces, new experiences. We decided to stay in Hong Kong, partly because this place has a lot of Christmas vibe (though more commercial than anything else) and in part because we wre tired of travelling. 2006 was a big moving year, but also a heavy travel year for all of us. Moreover, we have made a lot of long-haul trips at Christmas recently (99, 01, 03, 04, 05).
Unfortunately, Christmas began and ended with me feeling unwell. I missed most of the dressign of the tree with a bad cold and the decorations came down while I was sequestered in a dark bedroom fighting a migraine. In between I had hoped to write a fair bit about Advent, Christmas Films and a few other things, but simply never managed to do so.
We had a lot of presents this year, but the most joy was that C, now aged five and a half is really starting to udnerstand both the meaning and message of Christmas. Her class decorated a tree and put their own hopes on it in little ribbons – hers read “I hope all the world would stop fighting.”
This was a churchless Christmas for us. We have found a place to worship and this morning attended a different, less contemporary service, but it is still not a home. spiritually or emotionally. However, I don’t recall a Christmas where we have prayed as much in recent years, nor one where I have felt as joyful or thankful.
Of course, we missed family and friends, but by the wonder of the internet (and iChat), i was able to video-conference with my family and we have run up some record time in phone calls over the break. We are still getting use to the ease of making international phone calls comapred with Delhi and the internet/chat/voip possibilities. For us, 2007 will be a year of communication and re-connection.
We spent a wonderful Christmas day on a friend’s boat (technically a Junk), which is where the picture above was taken. Crusing and eating is not something I have ever done before on Christmas day, but in some ways it conencted back to the warm memories of Christmases in Australia. Over the break we’ve made new friends and gotten to know others a little better. Hong Kong still doesn’t feel like home, but it feels a little less lonely and isolating now.
As a family we’ve laughed a lot over the season. My daughter has become a whizz at cards, especially Uno, Go Fish and her Thomas the Tank Engine edition of Top Trumps. She’s also enjoyed a week of Ice Skating camp and as a family we’ve added the L‚ÄôAtelier de Jo?´l Robuchon Salon de The to our list of favourite eateries (we also had dinner at the main resturant a few nights before Christmas, which was a mix of dire service and sublime food and wine). Another new favourite is Lumiere (Sichuan), in part for the Crispy Chung King Fried Chicken (swimming in whole dried chillies) and in part for the great enertainment from Howard McCrary.
I’m still not sold on the cultural side of this city, especially after reading David Tang’s comments in the SCMP. However, there are at least some decent touring acts and we spent a wonderful night hering Jose Carreras on Thursday. We took C to her first pantomime as well and although it was a rpetty amateurish production, she was spellbound. As much as we have tried, it reminds me how little exposure she has had to live music and theatre.
L is back at work and school starts again tomorrow, so the new year really begins this week for us. It’s been a memorable Christmas and a very happy start to the new year.