A tree, a snowman, a reindeer jumper – is that Christmas to you? Have you ever thought how is it to spend Christmas in another hemisphere? Better think twice on the jumpers and add some ice cream to the picture.
Christmas is one of the best times of the year for many reasons. Presents being the most important one, obviously. And spending time with your family. But then, the idea of spending time with the family, all cosy, baking Christmas cookies and drinking mulled wine fits on the ideal wintery Christmas. Well, when it is 39 degrees outside, baking might not be the best idea. And squeezing 20 people in a room with only one air conditioner might not be the cosiest scenario either. But we do it anyway. We Brazilians are a stubborn people, we WILL CELEBRATE Christmas the way we saw it on the movies and we don’t care if we are melting while doing it.
Advent calendars, for starters. We don’t have such a big tradition on that matter, but once I got a chocolate advent calendar, and it went straight into the fridge. I would take that cool calendar into my arms (for some seconds, otherwise my body heat would melt the chocolates inside) and enjoy the chilly piece of cardboard.
The funniest thing is the fact that almost everyone decides to bake turkey for dinner, even in smaller houses, where the kitchen then becomes a furnace. And, as we Brazilians very much like it, there are at least five people in the kitchen. The grandma, the mother, the little kid, an aunt, and a tipsy uncle who comes and yells HO, HO, HO every 30 minutes. We like to be together, no matter the weather.
But the “Let it Snow” signs are what get me the most. A bunch of snowmen, snowflakes, fake snow everywhere, and outside the sun is toasting every living being. The weirdest thing is to go swim in the sea or in a pool and come back to see fake snow in front of the house. But then again, we buy into the Christmas spirit as it was marketed to us, to the whole world.
Now that I got to this point, I realize it might seem like I’m complaining, or that I’ve painted a horrible picture. This is going to be my first Christmas in proper winter, and I couldn’t be more excited for it, but I would never dismiss my hot hot Christmases. Having a cool bath, opening the presents with your hair still wet, with flip-flops and wearing a sunny dress makes up for a different kind of festive cosiness.
In the end, everyone enjoys that time, be it inside around the fireplace or fighting for a spot around the air conditioner/fridge and yelling at every single person who opens the door.