The Christmas of 2020

The Christmas tree of 2020. There’s one present beneath the tree, but I promise I got gifts.

As we are going through a pandemic at the moment, nothing truly exciting happened on this Christmas. But that was fine. A fine Christmas.

For me, Christmas is formed of two things: the Christmas Eve and the first day of Christmas. After that the magic is gone. This year, however, on the second day of Christmas it snowed, so I guess this was the highlight.

Brașov, December 26th 2020

Each year, even though each Christmas Eve is different, more often than not these things happen: shopping, cleaning, backing something sweet, decorating the Christmas tree, opening presents and listening to carols. I always say life would be better if I would just start doing things sooner and it’s true. Even though I practice what I preach, it just so happens that on the 24th there’s always something I forgot to buy, something I need to clean or something I want to make.

This Christmas Eve I did a little shopping, too much cleaning and mediocre backing. The cake tastes good, but it just didn’t grow – and that’s fine, my heart wasn’t in it. The boyfriend and I did some minimalist tree decorating and spent time with mom.

The first day of Christmas is always about family, friends and food. I’ve spent some years away from family on Christmas [I remember four], but the best ones are in my hometown. It’s soothing to be home. Despite it being almost the same each and every year. It’s comfortable to have something to relay on.

On Christmas Day, we had breakfast at home and then my brother, the boyfriend and I shortly drove to visit my uncle, one of my best friends and one of my brother’s friends. We distanced and we were safe as we are in a pandemic and we want to make sure we don’t help this virus spread.

We came home, watched TV, ate lunch and then the boyfriend and I took a long walk to the city centre. We chose the side streets, took some photos with the Christmas tree in the main market and then walked back home. We took some pictures with the tree, but because my hair is a disaster we’ll be taking new ones in the morning. We drank tee and each watched his own computer screen. Him, to watch some series he likes, me to catch up on some YouTube videos and to plan my 2021.

My hair has seen better days, but why embellishing the story….

It was as good a Christmas one could have given the current situation. This is the first Christmas without dad and I am not going to pretend that it was a good one. It was an ok-ish one. I tried my best to not spoil the mood of others, especially my boyfriend’s who likes Christmas. But especially on the Christmas Eve, which is my favourite time of Christmas, I was sad and angry and wished the day to be over faster. I just didn’t want to enjoy any of it. How could I, actually, when the person who played such an important role in my life is no longer with us?

He made Christmas Eves better. He always gave us money for singing carols despite our terrible singing voices. He put the tree in its stand and then gave ideas for how to improve our choices regarding decorating the tree. We’d have dinner together and talk. Those were the magical days. This year there was no singing carols, we decorated the tree in a different place and we talked [it’s what we do].

The Christmas of 2010, on a walk through the city centre with mom and dad. I took the picture with the flip-phone.

All in all, I had about 30 years of lovely Christmas Eves together with dad. How was he feeling on that Christmas Eve three months after I was born? I should ask mom, although it was the December of the 1989 so they were probably reflecting on the consequences brought by the political instabilities. Regardless, I just hope he was on the other side of the emotional spectrum of where I was this year, two months after he died.

Now, this Christmas was what we made of it. It wasn’t bad in itself; the Christmas spirit can only take you so far, especially when you are in no mood to celebrate. The good part was that we spent time within our family and I caught up on some reading. So, all in all, time was not wasted. I hope yours was a good one though!

See you in 2021! Make today count!

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