Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Christmas Plans: Dancing on the Island

Maybe this will sound very wrong, but I'm not doing the family thing for Christmas. Still going to be great.

I'm taking the bus to Manhattan with my camera and a little money. I plan to take a lot of pictures and just soak in the city. Eat a bagel or some Chinese food or both. I imagine everything else will be closed. It will also be another opportunity to figure out the subways, which I have not quite down yet.

It's going to be cold, that seven hours (in by 11:30, leaving at seven), so I'll be wearing sweaters and not party clothes. I'll be lingering over that bagel, drinking extra coffee. Tipping the bus driver for working on Christmas. Making nice with strangers. And then exploring something else.

1. My family lives elsewhere, spread out in very different states.
2. Since I am now unmarried, I am a project or fifth wheel in some of those homes. The fifth wheel thing is unavoidable, even okay. But I don't want to be a project.

3. In others, there will be a bazillion people, most of them small, wrecking a pile of very expensive toys over an afternoon. I can't stand to watch. Everyone else thinks it's normal.

4. All married couples I know snipe at each in public on the holidays. Don't know why. It doesn't bother them as much as it bothers me. Don't know why that's true either.

5. In some homes, no drinking. In others, way too much drinking.
6. In all, television will run incessantly. That means people don't talk to each other. If it's the houses that have too much drinking, that's probably for the best.

7. I see life differently. Too many different experiences, I think. See numbers 2, 3, 4. Or different values. See 3, 4, 5, 6.

I love them all, all of them have wonderful personal gifts. They are all a part of me and vice versa. But we're pretty much down to choreography at the events.

So this year, I'm investing in movement, hence, a bus ticket and walking shoes, a sweater. I'm looking forward to a really good bagel with lox. Photographs. Ambience. Engagement.

I danced last night at a party, alone. Soon I had seven partners, all at the same time. They did too--how about that? This never seems to happen in front of a turkey platter.

I hope everyone's holiday prep doesn't end with the choreography, but with the dancing--if you know what I mean. Something that comes from the heart and inspires enjoyment.

Joy to the World. Love is present. Adventure is all around.


Slamdunk said...

Sounds like an adventure, and I like your parting shop.

I am ashamed to say that I had never eaten a bagel until after undergrad. I think if I admit that in my present location, a crowd of angry locals would have me tarred and feathered within the hour.

Ann T. said...

Dear Slamdunk,
Along with the culinary confessions, I never tasted most fresh fruit (except apples or green grapes) until I was an adult. Fresh pears are the best thing going. Grapes with seeds taste different. Just amazing.

Maybe I will have some fruit with that bagel. Something I never have tried, for instance . . . just to round out the adventure!

Ann T.

The Observer said...

Bagels with lox! This born-in-NYC person left the city 1/1/1974 and I still remember Zabar's and bagels with lox! Drool!

New York is so much improved since my last memories of it--to get a feel for how it was then rent the original "The Taking of Pelham 1-2-3" and a Geo. C. Scott movie called "The Hospital".

Being single at Christmas is awkward. I have Christmas eve totally covered with stuff at church, but Christmas is blank. (My family is hither and yon too--not to mention small and dysfunctional!)

Looking forward to your photos!

Ann T. said...

Dear The Observer,
Oh, yes, you know what I mean, and I know what you mean.
Someone told me a long time ago you still have to do something to make it a holiday for yourself.

Thanks for writing in,
I will remember you when I get my bagel,

Ann T.