Sunday, 20 December 2009

Christmas preparations

Christmas is an important time in the Philippines. As a largely Catholic country, with a strong tradition of family ties, it is almost inevitable that this would be a big celebration. Apparently preparations started late this year - well into November - due to the aftermath of the typhoons that blew through here (plenty of evidence of that around).

Further to that, there is a strong trend to adopting American culture, especially the more consumerist and commercial: malls and fast food. Christmas music everywhere - "White Christmas", "Winter Wonderland", carols of the European tradition. Coupled with that, lights and decorations everywhere, and Christmas trees. Spruce is rather out of place among the palms. The whole thing is rather incongruous wrong time of year (far too early for me) and all the attributes of Christmas in Northern, wintry climes. Except this is the tropics, sun is out every day and the temperature is up in the 30s C. Snow and sleigh bells don't fit.

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