This is not news to anyone that has known me for some time but, because I move around a lot, there are some people I’m currently close with who have not known me for some time. This message is for you.
I haven’t celebrated Xmas for a number of years now. I used to be quite (read: very) soap-boxy about my hatred of all things yuletide but throughout the years that fanaticism (like most of my fanaticism) has relaxed to more of a dulled disdain.
There are facets of holiday celebration I’m more than happy to partake in; the parties and get-togethers and the like. I like spending time with people I like so, really, whatever the excuse – boom hells yeah lets go.
I will not decorate. I feel for the Earth, poor struggling whelp that she is. It does not bring me joy to string sparkly reminders of our diminishing rainforests from one corner of the room to the other.
I don’t do carols. They are terrible and make me want to kill myself. Or at least stab myself in the ears.
But above all else – I don’t do gifts. This is not exclusive to Xmas. I do not do gifts for any calendar occasion. I do do gifts, occasionally. . . just not when I’m supposed to.
On a horse, I mean. Ever since I was a kid. Back during my childhood, whenever summer would finally reach Newfoundland, my mother would take me out for our yearly trip to Prince Edward Park, where I’d get to ride a big black mare with a white diamond on its forehead named ‘Bucky’.
I loved those days. Led by one of the riders, we’d walk worn trails shadowed by dense forest for an hour or so before returning to the stable. A stop would usually be made at the playground afterward, and ice cream would follow for the drive back home.
Glorious though it was for a young girl to simply be astride a horse, where she could imagine herself to be a royal princess (though I was more often Zorro or Robin Hood), the thing I most remember from those days was the short, recurrent argument I would always have with the lead rider.