Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Dreaming of a W..arm Christmas?

Although my first eight years of life were spent in sunny Southern California, the holidays I really remember growing up took place a little further north. Christmases in good ol' Surrey, BC weren't always white but they were definitely never warm. My fondest Christmas memories have all taken place in the cold, which is why the two have always gone hand in hand for me.

Then in 2011, while living at home to save money to travel (and going a bit stir-crazy in process) I applied and was hired to work on a Hawaii-bound cruise ship over the holidays. In addition to being a pretty unique way to spend Christmas, it was also the first truly hot one I'd ever celebrated.

The following year I left home to go traveling. By December I found myself in tropical Thailand, intending to celebrate a second sunny Christmas by attending a Full Moon Party on the island of Koh Phangan. However, my grand plans were thwarted just days before by some little mosquito who was kind enough to infect me with Dengue Fever, which left me more or less bed-ridden. It was certainly a memorable holiday but not for the right reasons!

Fast forward to Christmas Day 2013 in Sydney, Australia where I'm currently living and working. I was expecting to have another sweltering Christmas but (gasp) it was actually raining here today! Although it was a bit wet, it was still warm enough to go for a nice swim in the ocean and have a beer at the beach.

While these past few Christmases have each been incredibly memorable, it's sometimes been hard to remember that it really is Christmas. I think I'll always associate this time of year with the memories I made back home: watching Christmas movies by the fire, going for winter walks in the park behind my house, sledding on nearby hills, enjoying hot holiday drinks from Starbucks red cups, listening to Christmas songs on 103.5 QM/FM from the warmth of the car (only people from the Vancouver area will know what I'm talking about on that last point) and making igloos (okay, so I only did that once... but it was one of the rare occasions where I managed to live up to a Canadian stereotype!)

Don't get me wrong, I have genuinely enjoyed the Christmases I've spent abroad/in the heat and wouldn't change them for the world (not even getting Dengue!) but I don't think Christmas will ever truly feel like Christmas for me unless I'm somewhere cold. Or more still, unless I'm at home. Until then...

Merry Christmas and lots of love to my family and friends around the world!!!

Christmas 2011 - Hawaii, USA

Christmas 2012 - Koh Phangan, Thailand

No photos, due to the fact I was incredibly ill with Dengue Fever. Boooooooo.

Christmas 2013 - Sydney, Australia

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

And Merry Christmas to you and Ben too! You're right, Christmas and cold definitely go together - though my family in Australia disagrees. Happy New Years!