Monday, 13 December 2010

It's just not right

Beautiful but no idea what it is
Well it is weird, definitely weird. Snow scenes in the shopping malls and balmy nights with Christmas lights, eating outside and people sitting at other tables wearing Santa hats and pulling crackers. All upside down and back to front somehow. It doesn't feel like Christmas. No shopping done, and no time at the moment anyway as I am still trying to write an assignment, and having difficulty getting my head around it, although it is beginning to flow a bit now. Maybe it is jet lag but I don't feel that bad and sleeping well.

The backgarden! A little different methinks!
It doesn't feel that odd that it is so warm and yet the nights darken so early, I got used to that in my visits to Brazil and when living in Colorado. It doesn't even feel that odd seeing all the different types of trees and plants as they remind me of Cyprus. Neither does it feel that odd that we set off from snowy lands to land in a pleasantly warm one, we experienced that last year in our visit to Cyprus in March. No what does feel odd is the occasional glimpses of Christmas, the occasional house decorated with fairy lights, the wafts of Christmas songs in the shopping malls, people greeting each other with the phrase "Are you ready for Christmas yet?" It's just not right! It jolts the system and gives me a strange "not quite sure I am with it" sensation. It is also odd being bitten by mossies in December! Don't they know its nearly Christmas? I may as well have dropped down on another planet, such is the strangeness of landing in Australia near Christmas time.

What a life!
The weather has been good to us as it has been quite pleasant most of the time and only on one night did it feel stuffy and that was before we discovered how to put on the air-conditioning courtesy of our future son-in-law. Okay we know how to operate air-conditioning but we are staying in someone else's house who is not here at the moment and it is difficult to know where the air-con controls would be situated, even if they are right under your nose. We did meet the young couple whose house we are borrowing before they set off to the other side of Australia for a family wedding, in fact we even drove their car back from the airport so they didn't have to get a taxi. I find it so encouraging though to find a couple with such a gift of hospitality, a very underrated gift I might add in Western cultures. In the bible, hospitality is highly rated. Romans 12:12-14 says

12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13 Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.

I think the Western church is very good at preaching about the first verse, less so about the second though and yet it is so needed. Hospitality used to be the hallmark of the Celtic monasteries where even an important fast would be broken for the sake of hospitality (The life of St.Columba), and they took their fasts seriously in those days. Sharing your home with a stranger is not easy, but if you can do it with grace and humility then that is a rare and precious gift, this couple have it in abundance. 

It has been interesting getting to know the place where our daughter now lives and spending some time with the about-to-be-married couple. We have not had much chance to get to know our future son-in-law up until now, so it is a special time indeed, just hope we don't put him off - as if we would!!! (Innocent smiley here I think!). Still he has made all the right moves by taking us out to eat, to a lovely quaint place out of the city in a place called York and our Christmas present from the both of them, was to pay for a holiday on the South Coast in Denmark next week (or was that to get rid of us for a few days? Hmmmm). York! Denmark! Not quite like the places we know that are called by the same name, we even lived in Denmark at one time but it wasn't in Australia that is for sure. 

And just to update you, back home in Latvia I am told there is 40cm of snow. Looking forward to landing in that when we eventually get back - I think!


  1. Make the most of the sun! It's going to snow again here!

  2. Well I guess it will look pretty on the wedding photos :) but yes I will make the most of the sun, don't worry :)

  3. Looks like you're having a great time. I agree with ju-north - they say that by Friday it's going to be bad again here! So enjoy the moment.

  4. Thanks Mavis. A white Christmas possibly then in England? Hope it doesn't upset your plans too much.


I love to hear your comments and will always reply, so go ahead, ask a question or just say hi