Monday, December 28, 2009

Christmas holiday with friends

Unlike many, I find the Christmas holiday very relaxing.  However, this year I did not know what to expect as we were hosting two houseguests (one of whom we had never met).  As it turned out it was one of the best holidays in recent memory due in part to the wonderful time we had with our houseguests. During their 4-night stay, we hosted our annual Christmas Eve dinner; spent Christmas day at my parent's in New Hampshire; and joined a great dinner party on the 26th to celebrate Boxing Day. Spread over three evenings - Christmas cheer seemed to be in abundance.  Each night we were up late chatting and laughing at nothing in particular and each morning I enjoyed exploring my hometown with our guests... Why is it I only do this when people visit from out of town? 

On Sunday morning, I stood on my curb waving goodbye to Joanna and Alicia as they drove off, and walking back to our apartment both my partner and I were commenting on how sad we were to see them leave only to get a message on our home phone from a friend we had not seen in 3+ years.  She was visiting Boston from Rio de Janeiro and was hoping we were in town so we could connect. Hearing Priscilla's soft Brasilian accent speaking through the answering machine was like receiving a late Christmas present - completely unexpected and appreciated all the more precisely for that reason.

Sunday turned out to be like an extension of the Christmas holiday and today waking up to go back to work I found myself more relaxed than I had expected (considering how late I'd been up each night) and extremely content.  I'm sure it is natural for people to think back at the close of each year and I'm no exception.  The past few days have made me realize three things which I already knew but perhaps had not thought much about lately.  1) Good friendships are not always easy to come by 2) If you really value them you'll make the effort to stay in touch 3) Spending a special time of year (like Christmas) with friends really does bring you closer together and make the holiday memorable.

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