The Twelve Days of Christmas

Thomas taking a photo of Erika & Lukas on Christmas Eve

Photo taken by Ms. Jen with her Nokia 808 PureView.

One of the true delights about my post-Christmas trip to London last year was to see how differently the days after Christmas and after New Years were lived out in the UK versus the US. Here in the US there is a big lead up, sometimes starting before Halloween, to THE CHRISTMAS, but it is more like a big lead up to BUY LOTS OF THINGS. And then the day after Christmas, it is all over.
By all over, I mean all over, done back to non-holiday life, unless you are a consumerist saint who has to go to the post-Christmas sales. Many folks in the US, who don’t work on salary at a beneficent company, will return to work on December 26th unless it falls on a weekend or they take paid or unpaid vacation time. Most folks will have January 1st off and possibly the whole or half day of New Year’s Eve, but even then many stores and restaurants will be open on the holiday.
This is so very different from the marvelous ghost town that London was when I traveled there last year from Dec 27th to Jan 13th. Many shops and small businesses where completely closed until after New Year’s day and a few until Epiphany (Jan 6th), most of my friends who lived in the city had left for Christmas, Christian or not, and did not return until after New Years or, again, a few until after Jan 6th.
The folks in the UK seemed to really celebrate or at least relax and enjoy some time off the full 12 Days of Christmas, or at least a good 6+ of them until just after New Years.
I decided that this year I would take a cue from my UK and European friends and celebrate the 12 Days of Christmas by being more mindful about catching up with friends, seeing family, and taking the time to unwind.