These are such polar opposites that the only way you could make it sound more badass is putting in “surfing under polar lights in Iceland”. One guy does that, he solved his ADHD and makes moves across choppy Iceland waters of minus degrees. It sounds so crazy I wana do it.
We draw closer and crazily closer to Christmas and I am getting attacked again with that classic question: where to be?
a. Switzerland/Europe for Christmas markets
b. Australian beach and family
And depending on the culture of the guy or girl who asks, … I am apparently flying to oz.
But that’s just public opinion.
I am juggling these amazing options in the air.
At first I decided, I will stay put. Christmas markets, Europe in my hand; snow, a house to myself – no actual commitments.
The 9am-4pm limits of sun – if you do get any – calls for some nice lighting entertainment. What people do when it turns cold enough to wear hats and gloves, and the bars and cafes are packed to the rafters after 6pm – is to go outside, socialize, eat and drink and MAYBE buy some nice cards and winter wear. In the center of the markets is the Christmas tree, full of lights itself.
It’s a seasonal thing and as I told my ex colleagues at the end of November, “finally things are looking more cheerful!”. It is cold, there is something to do but the Aussie in me is crying out for warm feet and less gluehwein queues.
The next Friday I meet my friend from another town and I’m much happier. A good comfortable inside bar, three drink rounds and a nice music system has me fairly happy.
And then as I got family pictures of lush green backyards, pizza by the harbour, happy unrushed coffee sessions with friends and our awesome domestic parrots – I tried to keep down some jealousy. 23 degrees with 28 degrees water temperature, while I was here freezing most mornings getting to work.
“Go to Australia!” my European friends cried out. My Australian friends also pointed out their accommodation for me.
The ball started swinging right field. Beach? South?
It does not hurt that mum’s birthday is coming up and Christmas is supposed to be family time.
Because of that and the reality of being on your own and commanding a household with just your two hands and feet – I would need to plan two trips to distract myself. Being outside for more than a couple of hours at a time, is not much fun unless you’re skiing.
When you’re in the prime of life what do you do? You go nuts. You get happy. You realize you just attained all of the goals you were fishing for, so you can actually relax.
There is no push, pull target; just deadlines for things like keeping yourself fed and warm.
I know for a fact that I might miss seeing my friends in the north: but it is not like it’s always easy to catch up, between a clock country, schedules, rushed drinks and living in a village. You give up before you even start because at least in my case, meeting up with people is painful.
But oh holy cow when I realized the privilege of having these incredible options in front of me. It struck me that both are what you make of it, and so what I was prioritizing was getting Vitamin Sea, losing myself in the water, getting warmed up, seeing my friends and a perspective on what actually changed in my country after all the crazy news and gossip.
Just for instance, Coogee backpackers:
And of course walking around in a bikini and dresses sounded just aceballs.
But the real magic? That was when my relative over the phone asked if I was coming down and promptly started checking flights. That also felt when my debit card came in the post two days early. I took that as a sign from the universe that I should enjoy my francs in Oz.
What is magic to you when Christmas comes? 🙂
Photo credit: My own at the bar and Instagram @whitsundaysqld