It’s hard to get into the Christmas spirit when you are sweating your balls off (sorry, that’s crude I know, but really, it’s crazy hot here non stop, I mean, just sweltering, step outside and you have a damp shirt from sweat hot, thank God there’s a pool hot, it’s so hot that when I see Mittenz splay himself out on the tile floor, I wonder, just for a moment, if that cat is not as dumb as he looks, that’s how hot it can be.)
Where was I? Oh, yes, the Spirit of Christmas. In a nation of Buddhists. But also a nation of Consumers. Nation of consumers + holiday of gift giving/buying= Nirvana.
Regardless of the origins, Christmas is in fact alive and well here in Singapore (and as a side not, also in Vietnam, wrap your noodle around that one would ya?) There are trees, lights, snow globes, and snowflakes, which gives us quite a bit of amusement. There are stores playing Christmas music and gift baskets being sold in malls. At least in places like Florida and other locales they adjust the holiday images some to reflect to location, so you see palm trees with lights and such. Here they just copied the standard American catalog of Christmas motifs and applied them with gusto, so you get Snowmen on the street, and malls selling sweaters.
But regardless of the amount of decorations we see, or the Christmas music we play without the cold, it just doesn’t feel like Christmas to me. It’s nice and fun, but the cold to me is so tied to the holiday that’s it’s hard to really feel the same excitement as I usually do. That’s not to say I don’t enjoy it, not at all. But the decorations here seem to go thru the motion, like the business all love it, but the people perhaps don’t really get it. Back home I think during this month you will start to hear “Have a good Christmas” or “Happy Holidays” from stores or people around you, but I don’t think I’ve heard that here. The Christmas spirit is limited to window dressings and gifts, but perhaps the sentiment of Goodwill to your fellow-man, is not quite there yet. Who know’s it’s early. It feels like any other month I think, but I look forward to seeing how things go. In the meantime, the decorations are great and it’s fun to see them all lit up on Orchard road and around town.
A few sample pictures for you from around town: