Twas the night before Christmas

24 Dec

It is December 24. After a full day of train travel yesterday,  I am now back in the cool and open land of Wettenboste in Northern Germanyl.  My home away from home.  All of my other Wettenbostel playmates are nowhere to be found.  And, aside from a few visits from Michael, one of my hosts here whose home is a few blocks up the street, I have the place all to myself.  A little intimate time with me and the seminar haus!  I have a fire going in the fireplace, prepared a nice meal for myself, and have some good music playing on the stereo.  I even made some homemade apples-sauce today!

It is the night before Christmas… or perhaps in Germany it IS Christmas… it’s hard to say.  I do know that in Germany they do their gift giving on the night of the 24th, rather than December 25.  Presents arrive from Santa Claus, much the same as in the United States.  “But how”, I asked Imke, my host while visiting the Black Forest, “does Santa Claus come when the kids are still up?”  She described a typical diversion.  One parent thinking they saw Santa Claus and the reindeer outside, attracting the children while the other unloads the presents, mysteriously appearing from Santa Claus.  Santa does not come down the chimney in Germany.  According to Imke, some families say that it is the Christ child, not Santa Claus who delivers the presents.  Now how this little child does this we do not know… probably about as easily as Santa Claus does with his sleigh and flying reindeer!

As a child growing up, Christmas was spent flooded with family visits.  My dad’s mom and dad on Christmas Eve… my mom’s mom on Christmas day.  And later that day a BIG celebration at one of my mom’s uncle’s homes.  As the years have passed traditions have changed.  Families have shifted and now it is my parents who are the grandparents.  And me, living miles away from my family, well, I have often been on my own for the holidays.  Sometimes being adopted by the families of friends, or spending time with other “orphans” as we lovingly called ourselves… over the holidays.  This year in the midst of my wanderings I am content to have a warm welcome place to be for its duration.

So, as this Christmas Eve slips its way into Christmas Day, I will be tending the fire in the Seminar Haus and thinking of all the wonderful people, family, new friends and old, all over the world, who help to tend the fire in my heart.  Namaste and Merry, Merry Christmas!

2 Responses to “Twas the night before Christmas”

  1. Carole Biver 24/12/2011 at 22:12 #

    Merry Christmas!!

    Wish you were here 😦

    Love,

    Mom and Dad

  2. Frank 25/12/2011 at 00:44 #

    Uncle Frank & Diane
    Merry Christmas

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