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Christmas with Snow

Living in Florida, Christmas never had any kind of hold on me. I lived in an area filled with Jewish people, so I couldn't even drive around to see houses decorated with lights. Christmas day was often 75°F. Nothing felt right. I even forgot that one day was Christmas - I woke up, wandered over to the computer, and wondered why nobody was online (AIM). Duh.

It's a bit different back here in Erie. There's snow, there are lights all over the place, and I'm around family. I've bought Christmas presents, have eaten the big Thanksgiving turkey, and the whole deal. I still don't particularly care for Christmas - I much prefer giving gifts "just because" and not "because it's Christmas" - but the people here in PA are at least nicer about things. You can wish folks a "Merry Christmas" without worrying that some nutjob working the counter at Sears will say "I'm Jewish, you prick" (true story).

I don't know how children in the southern states ever appreciate Christmas. It just doesn't "feel" right. Back here, I can safely say it's not because I've outgrown it, but simply because of the warmth. Growing up in the south, those children have a base different from my White-Christmas youth, but when what you're experiencing doesn't jive with the songs, the imagery, and the whole North Pole thing, I just don't know how you really get into it.

And don't get me started on the whole "bastardization of a religious holiday" stuff.

9 Responses to "Christmas with Snow"

  1. 75 Degrees? That's nothing. I've spent a Christmas in Sydney, Australia. Christmas day it was humid and around 100. We were opening presents around the tree and the A.C. was blasting.

    Funny thing is, Australians take Christmas really seriously and celebrate it just like Americans and Europeans. People get trees and eat big meals, and you see the Santa image (with lots of heavy clothing) everywhere.

  2. Down here in NZ, it's summer, so we usually expect a nice warm Christmas (and those guys in the Santa suits just seem to sweat it out). But this year, we just had hail.

    Andrew, why is it funny that Australia (and New Zealand, btw) celebrate Christmas like you do? We are still British colonies.

  3. It looks like we're going to have a nice warm Christmas here in southern California. 🙂 It's going to rain some after Christmas, though. 🙁 But it should clear up by January 1 .. it never rains on the Rose Parade. (well, twice, I think. In the past century.)

    It was a bit cold and wet a few weeks ago (it often is in late November and early December) but the sun is back out and it's warming up again. I'd say about 2/3 of my Christmases have been sunny and warm, and about 1/4 have been rainy. (The rest were dry, but not warm.) I've never spent Christmas anywhere where it snows regularly.

    In a few weeks I'm going to go visit my sister in Hawaii .. now Christmas in Hawaii would be odd. I've never swam in the ocean during the winter before. (Here in California the water barely gets warm enough during the summer!)

  4. Why would someone get upset at you for wishing them a merry christmas? You mean everyone's not Christian?????

    What a concept.

  5. Heck, I'm not necessarily a Christian.

    I've since modified it, when I think of it, to be "have a good holiday." Because regardless of your faith (or lack thereof), it's still a holiday "season." Whether you celebrate it or not, you can still have a "good" one.

  6. Well, I'm a Florida native (yes, really!) and I've enjoyed Christmas in the opressive heat. Well, sometimes it does get cool around here. I remember when it was 34 degrees (yes, in Miami) out.

    I always remembered all those holiday specials on TV when I was kid and wondered what Christmas was like with snow. Although, there's nothing wrong with Christmas in Florida. Imagine getting a bike and actually being able to ride it as soon as you got it. 🙂

  7. Ironically here in southern NH it's going to hit a balmy 40°F and 50°F over the next two days. It'll likely melt the couple of inches of snow we got over the past week. Hard to believe it hit -2°F just the other night on winter solstice, and now this...

    I do remember celebrating a few Christmas's with my in-laws in southern California. It just seemed wrong to be sitting out on a lawn chair in shorts on Christmas. Singing Christmas carols like "Let it snow" and "White Christmas"... Surreal.

  8. That's perfect. Have a happy holiday, season, new year, etc. Theres no reason you can't wish someone joy, it just helps to be inclusive.

  9. Hope I didn't offend you, Philip. I worded that comment really poorly. I meant that Australians celebrate Christmas in the same way as Americans and Europeans, with no modifications to suit their summer climate.