Friday, December 10, 2010
Eat, Drink, and Merry Christmas
The principle of entrainment is at work for the December season. Everyone hustles and bustles, feels pressure, wrings their hands with the lack of time. Now, I have very little shopping to do, I minimize commitments, and work at NOT being hassled for or over Christmas. However, it is not long when I am out in a store or on a road before I feel myself uptight, pushed, frazzled. It is entrainment and I am stepping into the pace and emotions of others around me. Staying home, listening to soft carols, and reading of Christmases past is a better way to go.
Yet, I don’t want to miss out on the fun either so I do attend things. Last night was the Writer Guild’s Christmas party. The last month of the year, they meet at a local place, Pizza by Stout, for eating, visiting, and the exchanging of one small gift with a writer in mind. There were notebooks, supply of pens, coffee mugs, mailing envelopes, staples, paper clips, soft music cds, and reading lights among last night’s gifts. Everyone is planning a new year of submissions as soon as January hits.
Several years ago I stopped giving my friends gifts in boxes. I had an evening meal for my lady friends. I cooked and served everything myself despite the fact I had children and I worked. My gift to them was a night they walked out of their house free of even a casserole to carry. They stepped into a decorated, candle-lit house and spent the evening catching up, slowing down, relishing each other’s company. The gift of my time for their pleasure was the best gift I knew how to give. The year my dad was dying was the only time I could not follow through. Then somehow I lost the heart for that evening meal, the tradition was part of another life that was lost to me.
So I switched to a Christmas tea with the same principle involved. I was giving them a gift of a brief respite from their scurrying for a gathering over the tea pot. But this year, everyone has a different schedule. We could not find a time that matched everyone’s calendar, including my own. So I named today a floating tea and announced I would be home. Anyone could drop by, settle in, or breeze out after a cuppa. They could name a time that suited them because the tea kettle would be on and the cupcakes waiting whenever and however they dropped by. It worked well, although a departure from what we liked to do.
The ones left remaining here at lunch time packed up and we all “floated” to our local Taco Town for lunch. We all had laughed, visited, shared a few minutes with each other and had a great day --which was the whole idea of the floating Christmas tea!