I miss Christmas. I miss fighting over which tree to chop down, my step dad sawing the bottom shorter and shorter because the base is crooked, leaving no room for presents underneath. I miss baking Christmas cookies (we have no oven). I’ve singing Christmas songs in the shower and humming during class.
Our students have decorated their classrooms with the polyester Christmas trees and gawdy, sparkley garland I remember from my youth, before my mom fell in love with country-style Martha Stewart decorations. Down in the main shopping district, Xinjiekou (shin-jay-ko), amid the neon lights, are Chinese style Christmas decorations, a blend of western Christmas ideas and displays for Chinese New Year. Next year is the year of the cow. My favorite display is a huge cow-Santa in a sleigh riven by cows with wings (brings to mind Bible stories of the golden calf!)
Christmas parties in China are more like concerts. Our students performed a concert complete with Karoke, hip hop, skits, and orchestra performances (what a mix). We had to perform at the Department of Education Christmas party – I was Pretty the Dwarf and we both danced in the Time Warp. Here are some pictures:
The Education Department Christmas Party:
Beautiful location – I think people must get married here:
Our boss Xena as Chinese MC:
Our friends Craig and Trevor as Western MCs
My theatrical debut as Pretty, one of Teacher White’s dwarfs: