It’s Sunday the 26th as I crawl from my bed, and sit at the computer to pen (or type) about the phenomenon known as Christmas in The Philippines. I thought I’d experienced all that was different here, or different than my Native New England Christmas’s of long ago, or during my ten years in Puerto Rico and all the other places I’ve been to around the world on Christmas day, I can be so very wrong sometimes.
As I had said, my shopping had ended 10 days or so prior to the 24th. And I’d purchased my wife her Christmas Wrist Watch at the Mall, and that for some reason had become a tradition for us over these many years together. The rest of Mayang’s presents are purchased by our daughter, I hand her my ATM card and send her out to shop. That she does so very well! (BTW: Mayang is very proud of her Watch Collection, and she should display them along side my Zippo Lighter Collection)
It’s on Christmas Eve when we and the family and friends celebrate, and at midnight the kids get their presents. But first is the party, which includes beverages, both for the kids, and a different beverage for the adults and me. The obligatory damnable rented Karaoke machine will rear its ugly head, a BBQ’ed Suckling Pig will be cooked, (On the Mindanao Bob’s Deluxe BBQ Grill) the pig was delivered healthy and very alive on Thursday the 23rd. albeit I do believe she will pass away on the morning of 24th of natural causes. The Pig arrived somewhat larger than we ordered, but was modified to fit the grill.
The Christmas tree that has been standing from the 1st week in November will be talked about and admired for the umpteen times, and last but not least people of good cheer will sit to eat, and drink and otherwise make merry.
Many, and I do many, many children will run and play all over my house, and consume copious amounts of candy that I keep on hand for their enjoyment. The next day it’s the parents who have to deal with the hyperactive little ones, who are crashing off their sugar buzz while at Christmas Morning Mass, I’ll be sleeping in soundly, at my house.
My niece Bebe Clair will take control of my camera for the evening, and I’ll properly end up deleting half of the pictures the following day, but, hey she enjoys doing it anyway.
Jump forward to 23:00 hours, the back yard is full, people that I have no idea who they are, and they are eating and drinking and singing on the damnable karaoke machine. Par for the course, as someone must know them. Midnight fast approaches and it’s time for presents to be about to be handed out. That’s when I first look and discover that some of the visiting parents had asked Mayang to put their presents under the tree also. What the hey! It all worked out.
Thompson Family Christmas was waning fast, now here’s the real truth, Paul Thompson, was the one waning fast. The rest went back to the food and singing and maybe another cocktail or three; I know where my bedroom is.
06:30 hours I awoke for my coffee fix, and notice that there was no sign of ever have been a party at my house. All was back to normal; no one had left until it was all cleaned up. What time that had been I’ll never know, but I do know that I was the only person still awake by 10:00 hours. I’ll assume they are resting up for the afternoon Mass at the church? I never privy to all the days’ plans and I like it that way.
From the Thompson clan in Bataan
To all our friends, throughout the land
You’re thinking Christmas is over and that’s so grand
You’ve got 12 months left, ‘till the next one’s planned
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from Bataan!