Christmas is almost over, even as holiday lights cast a properly cheerful air in the neighborhood. “Proper” is the operative term; after all this is a neighborhood that takes comfort in conformity when it comes to exterior paint colors. Bright colors, especially yellows, easily cause an Orwellian fit among many neighbors, leading them to summon the colors police in order to make sure the bright colors you have in mind stay in your mind.
Okay, I can’t spoil the season with my colors issue. After all, the generosity of the homeowners association’s Architectural Committee has allowed us to paint a “sundried tomato” trim on a golden brown palette that’s subdued enough to pass their harmony test. The house actually looks delightful now, especially with the holiday decor of purple, red, and cobalt blue spheres we hung on our porch.
Kids made our Christmas merry today, even if they seemed to have had only a flitting interest in the presents we had wrapped for them. They had more fun playing with the Roomba than with the toys they got. The three year old was a hard taskmaster. “Clean up!” he ordered the vacuum cleaner that obliged to be a toy for a day.
The adults got by without imposing on anyone their sense of generosity. It was liberating to limit carbon footprint to kids this season, even making the store-bought turkey meal taste better than usual. Cleaning up after all guests had left was still a chore, but hey, having some momentary tidiness after the party is over is reward enough.
My nieces called, thanking me profusely for their Nooks. The other day, the nine year old also announced that her dad would have a “real job” after the New Year. She had not been comfortable telling her friends that she had a “stay-at-home dad”. Neither was she so enthused about the fact that her dad’s long awaited job will mean that they will miss him during weekdays. However, she understands at her tender age that compromises and adaptation are key to survival. My niece has a more realistic worldview compared to what many members of the current U.S. Congress have, judging from their reckless stubbornness to stick to their partisan scripts.
I must say I had a beautiful Christmas, filled with hope for an economic and political turnaround where leaders make decisions like sensible adults. There’s optimism that they will focus on win-win solutions, keeping in mind the best interest of their constituents. I hope you had a great holiday too.
Merry Christmas everyone!