Christmas card

عيد ميلاد متسامج جدا

لندن ــ لقد بات عيد الميلاد (الكريسماس) على الأبواب ــ ويبدو أنه كان كذلك منذ منتصف الخريف. وفي حال ما إذا كانت هناك أية علامة على الوهن، فلدينا الآن يوم الجمعة الأسود، الذي صدرته الولايات المتحدة، عندما نتشجع جميعاً على تجرع روح عيد الميلاد الحديثة والتسوق إلى أن نسقط من الإعياء.

الحق أنني أستهجن، وفقاً لطريقتي العتيقة الطراز، الاحتفال بهذا اليوم على هذا النحو. فمنذ متى كنا نسعد بقدوم الكريسماس في أوائل نوفمبر/تشرين الثاني؟ لا ينبغي للاحتفالات أن تحدث إلا عندما يأتي يومها على التقويم. عندما كنت صبيا، كان يوم الكريسماس يأتي في عشيته، الرابع والعشرين من ديسمبر/كانون الأول. وكنا نذهب إلى القداس في منتصف الليل. وبعد ذلك كان والدي يحملني إلى البيت.

وكنا نستيقظ في الصباح التالي لفتح الهدايا وإعداد أنفسنا لغداء الديك الرومي. وكان اليوم التالي للكريسماس عطلة عامة نتناول خلالها لحم الديك الرومي البارد ولحم الخنزير.  ثم نعود إلى أعمالنا في السابع والعشرين من ديسمبر. كان ذلك هو كل شيء. انتهى الكريسماس، إلى أن يأتي يوم الرابع والعشرين من ديسمبر التالي.

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