It is different this year.
I can feel it and smell it and taste it.
There are more lights.
Twinkling through the night.
Signalling the happiness that seems to lie beyond reach but… oh hey, hullo, what is that softness I feel in my fingers as they graze the icy air? Could it be…?
Entire streets in my town are lit up. Santas climbing through windows and peering down chimneys and knocking on doors, carrying sacks of what we can only assume is hope. Desperate hope.
And people who never made an effort are making one.
It’s a bit like the American movies.
We take little one out for a small walk before dinner, when it’s pitch black under the heavy drapes of the winter sky at night. And all the houses are decked for conquest. Each competing with the other.
So eerie, if you stand still and let the breath cloud away in front of your face. Stone cold silent still, twinkling lights in the darkness. Sometimes faint bells ring and sometimes a disjointed jingle sears through the thickness of cold.
But then a pair of bright eyes meet yours from down somewhere by your knees, and tiny little fingers grasp your solid warm ones, and little feet stamp stamp stamp excitedly, and it’s not eerie after all. It’s joy. We all need a sprinkling of joy.
I see a light at the end of the tunnel. I am so so scared, but so hopeful too!
What are your plans for the holiday season this year, folks? Can you see and taste and smell it yet?