Last year I notice I did a ‘bah humbug’ post, while in an hotel in Auckland. This year’s equivalent is a grumpy post about presents. Why? Well, like all of us, I love getting presents. There is nothing more exciting than getting a gift, ripping off the paper and seeing what is inside. Of course, sometimes presents disappoint (the book you already have, a glass bowl, with a chip in it, that you have seen for years standing on the gift givers piano), but mostly it is a lovely experience.
But the whole consumerism of Christmas these days is another thing. Why do we need endless pieces about ‘what to buy for…X’? If you don’t know what your partner/daughter/son/best friend likes or wants, you are in serious trouble. Of course, these ‘articles’ are all about advertising and encouraging us to spend, but still…spending hundreds of dollars/pounds/kroner doesn’t tell the person you love them. One of the simplest Christmases I had was one year I was a student, and my mother and I had very little money to spend. I bought a bottle of gin and my mum a bottle of whisky, which meant we had drinks for guests and ourselves over the festive period. Of course we had our stockings for little personal things as well, but the shared nature of our presents made things special.
These days, I buy Christmas presents for my husband, two old school friends in the UK, and anyone who visits us, or who we visit, on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day. Our families have agreed to only give gifts if we see each other, which makes perfect sense given how wide spread we all are. It doesn’t mean we don’t care, just that there is more to life than material goods.
Remember the moral of Dr Seuss’ The Grinch Who Stole Christmas?
the Grinch thought
doesn’t come from a store.
a little bit more
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