"To finish the moment, to find the journey’s end in every step of the road, to live the greatest number of good hours, is wisdom....Since our office is with moments, let us husband them."
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Monday, November 26, 2007

Christmas 24/7

Note: My parents and brother recently spent a week in Copenhagen visiting me, during their time off for Thanksgiving. This will be the first of 3 posts about their visit.

Thanksgiving is a great holiday. In fact, it may be my favorite. And I'll go all into what it was like in Denmark in my next post. But, while here, I think I determined a very important function for this holiday. It tells everyone exactly when they can start to think about Christmas.

See, in Denmark, Thanksgiving doesn't exist. No Indians or Pilgrims. This also means they have no established date in their calendar of when Christmas thinking should begin. So it becomes an arbitrary process, at best. And in my opinion, they arbitrarily decided way too early. Christmas decorations, music, and advertisements first started appearing on the streets and in the stores of Copenhagen almost 2 full weeks ago. And, since the country is pretty much completely homogeneous, and the country's official religion is Reformed Lutheran, there are no public qualms about decorating. So, pretty much, everything is covered!

Not only that, but Christmas is a huge holiday for the Danes in terms getting together with friends and family and sharing a meal. However, because there are so many friends and family, these meals have already started. And, because these meals have begun, restaurants have started to cater their menu for Christmas meals. What this means is that while my parents and brother were here, we had pretty much the same food 3 nights, because it was the only option on the menu. Don't get me wrong -- I love the Danish Christmas meal, and I really like the fact that it's a set meal like Thanksgiving, but there's only so many times you can have it in a week. Three types of herring, smoked salmon, shrimp, fried plaice, beets, red cabbage, tomato, liver pate, chicken salad, roast pork, roast duck, apples and prunes, potatoes cooked in brown sugar, pickles, crackers, cheese, and rice pudding. With that kind of lineup, once is enough.

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