I don’t know if it only happened to me while I went for walks or during train journeys from the middle of November on, but – I had the impression that there is and was much more tinsel this year everywhere. With tinsel I obviously mean all the joyful, sparkling, glittering Christmas decoration.
My suggestion is that the people wanted (and they had?) to make it as cosy as possible at their homes. Of course, we still face tough times and I feel for everybody who wanted to go home to see his/her family and couldn’t. Having dinner together on zoom and the remote waving in the camera while unwrapping gifts are definitely not the same as the cheerful hugs if someone found a very enchanting present.
I taught the last semester and I also painfully miss the real contact to my eager, funny and lively project groups.
But just now during Christmas time with all the additional tinsel we won a lot of ‘Hygge’, the Danish-Norwegian word for cosiness. We have to make it as nice as possible at home, so we do and on the way unexpected beautiful events happen. E.g. on the 3. Advent my flatmates played Christmas songs outside in the garden next to our small decorated fir for a full hour. The neighbors came over, stood next to each other while respecting the security distance. They brought hot mulled wine in their own mugs to stay warm and they were so happy afterwards. One of them came the next day and gave us coffee and fruit cake.
Thank you, dear flatmates.
Maybe we can transport a bit of ‘Hygge’ into the next year – more cosiness, more time at home instead of rushing headless from one family member to a friend to another family member in 5 different towns. The end of the year normally is already stressful enough. Maybe we’ll be ready to worship walks without any gifts at all. On the 24th I went for a walk for 2 hours at the Spree in Berlin, even though there was drizzling rain and it was fantastic (without gifts, whereby the huge latte felt like a bliss, but I got it myself). We worship all the things, activities, events which are simple, but provide a lot of joy.
I know – this article might sound as a re-edition of all the other ‘We can learn so much due to covid-19 and get so much good out of it.” and it sounds like malice. But yes, indeed, I think we could profit in certain human ways. I wish that there is going to be more tinsel next year as well.
And here a compilation of my favorite Christmas trees: