Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve began like any other day. Woke up embarrassingly late, had breakfast, did nothing to benefit the world at large, et cetera. The most exciting thing that happened in that period was probably the little playful fight I had with my brother. Nobody was hurt, but a coat hanger was broken. It wasn’t until a little after lunch that I became fully conscious of the fact that we were going to have a big dinner with family friends that night. And then a rush of excitement knocked me over. The guests were to arrive at four thirty for dinner because one of the families had to be someplace later in the evening, so my family was in a hurry to get everything tidied and the food ready. When I finished my share of work, my mother reminded me that there were still gifts to wrap.

I cheerfully went upstairs, got out the presents, and realized that the ribbon was nowhere to be found. I looked, and then I asked my mother to look, because she always finds whatever is misplaced, but she couldn’t find it either, so I left the house to go to the dollar store. You should have seen the streets. I live in a relatively quiet and uneventful neighbourhood, full of old people, children, and some ridiculously good-looking guys who, unfortunately, either prefer to stay at home or don't go out when I go out. On that afternoon there were people everywhere, all walking a little faster than usual, and all carrying plastic bags full of things from stores like Safeway and BC Liquor.

The dollar store didn’t carry the exact color of ribbon I wanted, but I did find other ones as well as a box of tiny bows. From there I went to Safeway to purchase drinks and pie. Safeway was busier than ever, with check out lines that were incredibly long. There were also more employees working than usual, and I managed to see the very cute one. I saw him right as I walked in, and when he looked up briefly, I may or may not have smiled like an idiot. I also noticed that deodorant was stacked up in every corner. As I stood in line, gleefully holding on to my basket of pop – a rare treat in my family – I glanced at a magazine that claimed it would make me a “better kisser”. I did not buy any deodorant.

Safeway didn’t have the ribbons I wanted – plain red, what happened to plain red? – so on my way home I stopped by a photocopying/faxing shop, and voila! Red ribbons! When I got home I was in a Christmas high: excited, pumped, and very, very hungry. I wrapped my remaining gifts to the Nicole C. Mullen cd, and managed to stick them under the tree just as the guests were arriving. Part of my excitement was due to what I’d seen when I looked inside my stocking. I have no self control, okay?

Everybody was happy, the conversation never stopped, and the food, the food was great. One of the guests had heard about my sushi obsession and brought a plate just for me. They were different from what I usually order – they were a lot fancier than what I usually order. The sushi was a complete surprise, and was absolutely delicious. The rest of the food – including the traditional slain turkey – was equally amazing, and I stuffed myself till I could be stuffed no more. I also drank pop like I’ll never drink pop again.

When the guests left after a wonderful evening of dining and humorous anecdotes (my father is one of the funniest man I know), we hung around the living room for a while, cleaned up, estimated that we’ll be eating turkey for the next six years, and went upstairs. I made my brother promise to wake me up before opening the presents on Christmas Day. Knowing him, he’ll probably get up at six in the morning. (He woke up at four, by the way). As I entered my room, I heard distant guitars and singing. I looked at my stereo: off; leaned towards my dad’s room: random program on television not involving guitars or singing. Carollers perhaps? I rushed to my window, pulled up the blinds, opened the window and stuck my head outside. They were on the sidewalk walking back and forth, and when they saw me, they waved and screamed, “Merry Christmas!”

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