I have rarely spent Christmas in Chile.
One of my neighbors has hung a Christmas wreath on the apartment door, but I can’t get into the spirit in 90º+ heat.
When I think about it, I grew up in and spent a lot of years living in places where it was warm at Christmas. That was many moons ago, and now I am accustomed to being where it’s cold, possibly even snowing, for Christmas. For the life of me, I cannot get used to Christmas in the summer. It doesn’t put me in the Christmas spirit when I’m sweating instead of shivering.
There is not one jingle bell nor spring of holly nor anything else decorating my apartment. The only thing that’s tempted me at all was the miniature fake tree at Lider. It was pink and sort of resembled an explosion of bottle brushes.
I would buy it just because it makes me laugh, but then I’d have to pack it when I leave.
To Chile’s credit, Christmas decorations didn’t appear in July like they do in the US. They waited until after Halloween and, though there’s plenty for sale, it’s still not the consumerist haven that I’m used to. Things are not overly decorated either, but my comparison-ometer may be skewed after living in New York for a few years.
I made it to the mall the other day. It was decorated with a giant Christmas tree, garland, and a big red area in the middle with one of those throne-type chairs where Santa, known here as el Viejito Pasquero, juggles little children on his lap as he listens to their toy requests. I might as well have been in a mall anywhere in the US, except I didn’t notice any whiny, pouting, tantrum-throwing, sassy-mouthed, hissy-pitching episodes here like I used to “back home.”
I managed to find el Viejito Pasquero. The poor thing looked like he could use a good meal or perhaps he was just worn out from wearing that heavy red suit in this heat.
I whispered my Christmas list in his ear. Luckily for me, he didn’t ask if I’d been naughty or nice.