When I was living in Switzerland, I used to love Christmas. Always with my family. The cold and dark nights. A huge pine with lights in each village. Spice bread. Vin chaud. Christmas markets. Special.
As kids, we were hoping for the snow to come early enough to cover the ground and stay for ever, but at least for Christmas. The sweet memories, through the years, of Christmas preparations with my family. The tree, the decoration always led by my dad. the simple dinner and the presents on Christmas eve, the preparation of Christmas lunch, and yes it’s late enough..let’s pop a bottle, laugh here and argument there, and pop another bottle…It was loud and fun, and yes it was stressful but enjoyable and memorable in the same time. So alive!
The Christmas period is now a reminder of my choices. Living far away. The week before Christmas is always a tricky one for me. I try to avoid it, pretend that I don’t care. Totally impossible with the amount of decorations and advertisements everywhere. And then, I just wait until it’s over..
This year, it is different…
Two weeks ago at work, I made this comment that I was only looking forward to the 26 December, so that Christmas would be over. It didn’t go into a deaf ear. One of my colleague instigated a week of surprise for me, calling for a team effort…of surprises. Every day, I would feel more at home, and feel the cold and the snow…
Let me explain:
Monday, an orginal painting of a winter mountain scene, from a work colleague who is a wonderful artist, was on one of my window. Beautiful. Next to it was a print of my village emblema. So thoughtful! Tuesday, I had ice at my windows, paper cut into ice shape and sticked to my windows around me. So clever. Wednesday, someone changed my computer screen while I was away from my desk. I discovered a picture of the ‘Grand Chalet’ of my village under the snow. Speechless. Also, snowfall of shredded paper on the floor (spread by the manager herself). Thursday, silver stars all over my desk, more ice on my shelves, snowflake shape cut on my window (another piece of art) and Swiss chocolates. And Friday, a few snow flakes and silver stars suspended on top of my chair.
This made this week very special. Each morning, I had tears in my eyes, touched by the gifts and surprises, friendship and joy that were flowing towards me and between everyone. What a wonderful spirit! I felt so grateful..
Very special. A new memory.
Below, a few pictures from our last trip in Switzerland, snow in my village.