Despite it not being a national holiday in China, we thought we should still do the obligatory Christmas post. This year, is certainly going to be a different experience…
We did consider going back home to England to celebrate, like every other year, with our family and friends, but having only been here for two and a half months thought it might be a bit too soon. There’s already a trip back planned in 2013, and having so recently moved to this new place that we now call ‘home’, we thought it might stir up some serious homesick feelings, which so far we’ve managed to keep (nearly) at bay!
It’s definitely a decision that we’ve questioned over the last few weeks… From the 1st December, when our entire Facebook feeds were filled with pictures of friends' completed Christmas trees, through to the last week of customary post Christmas party hangover statuses, we’ve felt like we’ve been missing out. There’s been the odd heavily branded Christmas tree go up outside some of the most luxurious plazas here (complete with ‘Mini’ decorations (see pic) and Moet branding) but even these are few and far between – and feel more like a token acknowledgement/brand advertisement rather than anything more festive. It’s only really started to feel a small bit Christmass-y over the last week, when we’ve seen Christmas trees go up in the western restaurants, our apartment building and in the office. Oh, and the small flurry of ‘snow’ (read: melted ice) on Wednesday helped too.
|Some festive cheer...|
Plus, we have a complete Christmas in a box that my sister Nicola sent us this week. Inside, there was a santa hat, tinsel, hanging decorations, fake snow, handmade paper snowflakes, a Miracle on 34th St DVD (the best Christmas film, ever!), a Christmas CD, chocolate coins and… some Lindt balls! It caused a great deal of excitement and will be packed into our suitcases so we can decorate our room while we’re away.
|Holding as many of the Christmas treats as possible...|
We’re back in Shanghai to see in the New Year, having originally been told that there were no public holidays over the whole festive period. However, in true Chinese style, the Government released three days of official holidays last week. Since then, there’s been an endless amount of confusion, speculation and deciphering to work out what they were saying – eventually found to be that the 1st, 2nd and 3rd are holidays, on the proviso that you work the 5th/6th weekend. It was quite a funny few days while everyone tried to work this out, and the upshot is that everyone is ignoring the Government anyway, because they don’t want to work the weekend!
We’ll write our next post from the beach, but in the meantime – Happy Christmas!!