No matter how far away from home or tradition I go, Christmas stalks me. As I tanned on an exotic Costa Rican beach, staring at palm trees instead of pine, it was suddenly there. Santa was wearing a flower print shirt, but was hohoho-ing nonetheless. In Africa, despite my best efforts to replace reindeer with springbok, jingle bells were a-ringin’. Even here in Vietnam, a country where less than 10 per cent of the population even recognizes Christmas – where neon karaoke signs outshine twinkly tree lights, where stockings hung by the chimney with care are quickly taken away by the local laundry women, where sleighs are replaced by maniac scooters – Christmas has snuck its way through passport control. Holiday cheer greets me with chopsticks.
Dagnabbit, Christmas, you win again! Once more I am swayed by your corny songs, wooed by your high caloric treats and, mostly, excited as a pigtailed brat that you are only a few days away!
Hooray! Hooray! Christmas is (almost) here!