This evening brings to a close TP's early Christmas break. The house is clean, the dishes are done and the laundry is folded and put away, and as far as T is concerned these are the keys to a peaceful work week. As I write this P is borrowing a copy of 'The Grinch Who Stole Christmas' from our neighbor to show at school tomorrow. T, having suffered Christmas lesson meltdown, will be relying on her wits and marvelous powers of distraction for classes tomorrow. Considering she has taught over 20 lessons on Christmas without one mention of what this Holy holiday means to her, who can blame her? Don't worry. Sometimes T might sound like Scrooge, but really she's not. So yes dear family and friends, we do work on Christmas. (Well, P does, T had no classes that day so went ahead and used daikyu.)
**Warning (T might go off topic a bit...) **
Japan is a largely secular nation and when religion is practiced it is almost always Buddhism or Shintoism or some magical hybrid of the two. The largest deviation from this is weddings when many young Japanese couples have a second ceremony (after the Shinto wedding) that looks like a Christian church wedding, this is done largely for the photos and the bride's dress. Every time TP drive past a 'wedding plaza' P says 'oh look a Church!' and T says 'nope, just another fake one...' It is a constant reminder of the pollution of Christian wedding traditions through cultural adaptation and mimicry. T is glad she eloped.
**back on topic**
This weekend was grand. TP got home from work late on Friday night and celebrated with popcorn for dinner. Saturday started early for T who picked up 24 bagels after a quick trip to the doctor. P slept in, which we all know he enjoyed. Then TP embarked on a grand adventure in search of a Christmas Ham that took them down the Tenryu River into the Ina Valley. They searched high and low, visited a Brazilian grocery and were temporarily distracted by lunch meats and Swiss Cheese. Once they got back on course they found what they were looking for and successfully procured 3 small hams. (Think uncut Canadian Bacon).
Saturday night was reserved for a Christmas Party that was great fun. TP's Christmas Ham was a hit, and even their 'lets get rid of this Vodka T accidentally bought' cocktail was drunk by the revellers. T then decided that 2am was an appropriate time to call her parents. Thank goodness for timezone differences because noon was a fine time, except they were quite busy and T was quite tired.
TP were woken early the next morning with a Christmas knock on the door. Sure enough the postman was there delivering a package of goodies at 7am. Worry not TP have fruit cake and Christmas cookies, an advent calendar and even a Christmas Tree. It is indeed beginning to look like Christmas!
Monday was a workday for P, but T had off...perfect for reorganizing the bedroom, setting up the printer, doing the laundry and cleaning the tatami rooms. Alas, T ran out of time and did not get her Christmas presents to America in the mail. However the sunset was striking to witness as she went to pick up P. A snow cloud just tumbled right over the hills and shrouded the lake as the sun was falling which made for some eerie colors and T was glad that P didn't have to commute home by bike as they drove through the light dust that fell.
Today was the Emperor's Birthday so all of Japan was off. TP celebrated by playing video games. It was excellent. Now it is time for bed...but alas, P has not returned with 'The Grinch.' No worries, T is reading The Tale of Murasaki by Liza Dalby at the moment. Maybe, if she is quick, she can get a chapter or two read before lights out.
Much love in this Holiday Season!