For most people, this is the first holiday season in three years to share with loved ones. But after so much time away because of the pandemic, it sounds like many aren’t really “into it” this year.
Over the past few days, I’ve been making my usual phone calls to friends and colleagues with whom I won’t have the opportunity to speak before Christmas.
On Sunday, I chatted with a colleague who earlier this year moved to Calgary from Winnipeg. She, her husband and their son are keeping things low key. It was surprising since I figured with it being their first Christmas in a new city that it would be a time for starting new traditions.
“They’re (husband and son) both working on Christmas so I haven’t even bothered putting up the tree,” she said, with the word “bothered” screaming out that the decorating has no importance. “Maybe I’ll do some baking but, no, there’s nothing really happening.” She then encouraged me to pack up my entourage and visit this weekend. I laughed but declined.
Elsewhere, a friend in overly priced Toronto said it was simply a matter of not spending a lot during the holiday season as his reason for having a non-Christmas.
“It already costs so much for gifts and this year with the price of everything I’m just not doing much,” he said, in the city where he has no family. “Maybe have a movie or game night with friends between Christmas and new year’s but nothing really official. I could’ve gone home (to Nanaimo) but it’s too expensive and risky with the airlines. I did last Christmas by myself so this isn’t new.”
The sentiment repeated itself amongst the others I questioned but I’m profiling these two folks because they historical (and maybe notoriously) make Christmas a “thing” every year.
Truthfully, I’m also not “into it” this year. Our Christmas tree isn’t up and, as of this writing, I haven’t started shopping – though that isn’t out of character for me. My mom casually texted and asked if we’re coming for dinner. Even the message read like, So, do you wanna do dinner or something?
At the mall on Monday, Santa had nobody waiting to get a picture taken with him. That could be for any number of reasons (cost, COVID, etc.), but it was still noticeable that what used to be a big draw had nobody interested despite there being decent foot traffic at the shopping centre.
I’m not trying to be a downer, I’m just observing how people seem to be feeling this year.
Mine is a creative household so we find entertainment in the silly and off-the-wall so I’m not concerned we’ll have a bad time. We don’t need decorations and all the usual Christmas hullabaloo for it to be a holiday with our dogs.
So, with whatever you do — or don’t do — have a wonderful holiday season.