This Year’s Christmas

Posted on December 29, 2011

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I always hear Filipinos who live abroad say that they prefer to spend Christmas in the Philippines not just because of their families but because of the festive mood. Indeed, Christmas is really different back home. As early as September, radio stations play Christmas songs and by October you will see Christmas trees in most places. After Halloween, people start shopping for gifts. Then, there would be parties and gatherings here and there. The holiday season ends after the first Sunday of January which is for the three kings.

This was taken from a department store in PH last October

How sad is sad?I got curious.

It was already the 24th and I can’t feel the Christmas yet. A project kept me busy and it was just completed a week ago. We also had classes that day. I’m used to working on Christmas eves although normally, Filipino employees go on vacation as early as the 22nd. Even if that was the case, everything around me makes me feel and reminds me of the holiday season.

I asked my Vietnamese friends to have dinner with me. They don’t have Christmas but they accepted my invitation and called it our Christmas dinner. We planned to eat in a restaurant but we changed our minds and went to Costco instead. The queue for the roasted chicken and cakes were so long we ended up buying marinated chicken and decided to just cook it ourselves.

Simple can be special.

They even gave me  gifts.

I’d like friends to rack their brains rather than asking me what gift I like. Effort makes everything extra special.

While  enjoying the chicken, we talked about  Christmas  in Philippines and how, in our opinion, Korea became prosperous. ^^

After eating, I hurriedly went to the place where the Filipinos are. They prepared a skit about the night when Mary was about to give birth. There was a mass celebration and of course, Filipino food.

I arrived in my room just in time for 12 MN in the Philippines. Most Filipinos are fond of greeting their family and friends when the clock strikes 12.

On the 25th, I got up from bed at noon. Then, I went to Myeongdong thinking that there wouldn’t be much people which makes it a good opportunity to do some window shopping.

I was wrong. In the subway exit nearest Migliore (one of the big shopping arcades here), people weren’t moving. I had to use another exit because I don’t want to get stuck.

You read it right.They’re giving away free hugs.

Crowd in Myeongdong.

Almost all shops are on Christmas sale. Good thing, I forgot my card and I only have 10,000 KRW  if not I’d be probably broke.

There were so many people and I noticed that most of them are couples.

Yesterday, a Korean friend asked what I did for Christmas. I told her I went to Myeongdong. She asked who was with me. I said I was alone. With the way she reacted, it makes me feel that what I did wasn’t normal. Lol. She told me that I should get a boyfriend.

I therefore conclude, that Christmas is for couples.

Next stop was the house of the Filipino couple who takes care of me here. They prepared some food for their family and friends. On my way to their home, I saw the cute cakes again and felt sorry that I can’t buy one. I’d like to take  pictures of it and I’d like to know if they taste as good as they look like.

Christmas here is different but it wasn’t sad like I expected. I even thought that I’d cry but I didn’t. Maybe because I somehow prepared myself or maybe, like what my classmate told me, because I didn’t see much people celebrating it. One thing’s for sure though, my family and friends here made it not just bearable but special.

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Posted in: Korea, Others