Of course reality kicks in and tells us we have to clean up the holiday debris, go back to work and get on with our lives. But for that one moment of discovery we are lost and disconsolate.
I know some people try to hold on to the vestiges as long as they can, leaving the decorations till New Year or Ukranian Christmas is over, but most of us can't spend much more than a week looking at lopsided trees that have been attacked by dogs or cats, bare of any gift boxes, tinsel hanging awry, without wanting to get rid of the evidence of our lost paradise.
For me that moment usually happens after putting the Boxing Day dinner dishes away. I am a kid in the weeks leading up to Christmas. It's never too early for carols, never a problem seeing the tree decorated while the jack o lanterns wither away, never too early to start Christmas shopping. But when Boxing Day is over, I've had it. The tree and decorations come down, the roaster goes back on the top cupboard and the cards are filed away. As happy as I am to see Christmas come, I think I'm just as happy to see it go. I like to file my life into segments, what's over is over. And now Christmas is over.
But- I just had a fantastic idea for next Christmas and I know what gifts I'm going to pick for about half my family. And I think.... Well maybe Christmas, like the reasons behind it, is never really over. We just like to think we're moving on.
So for anyone already starting to plan Christmas 2014, Merry Christmas!