Christmas may be all about being together, nice food, presents, more food and happiness... it´s mainly pretty boring: waiting for breakfast, breakfast, waiting for coffee, coffee (with cake, which is actually one of the nice things :P), waiting for lunch, lunch... so about six years ago we decided to gather a few people to make a Christmas band for the occasion, and prepare a coffee-christmas concert for ¨my¨ revalidation patients and the palliative patients in the care-hotel where I was working: Dutch sing-a-longs, a christmas story, swinging versions of known songs and thoughts / poems on the day that most people there were also practically mainly waiting until Christmas was over again. Everybody happy: we had something to do on the first day of Christmas (occupying the livingroom with drums, piano, amplifiers and microphones to practice, also very nice for my parents... and the neighbours! :P), and the people always enjoyed the performance as much as we did.
But now I´m almost 10.000 kilometers away, and skype-connections are still not really ideal for these kinds of things... so I couldn´t participate this year. But luckily the others still did it, and in some way I was there in another way, because they read my christmas version as the ¨Saint Nicholas mail in rhyme¨ as one of the little texts, about the work and the people here in Quito:
Dear Santa (and Rudolph),
I suppose that you have heard
that I won't be around this year.
And I don't know if anybody
ever gets your presents here.
Still I'd like to ask you
(hope you don't mind that I do):
When you'll send your presents,
can you send one to me too?
The post office will rip you off
(per miligram the bill is payed)
and what I'm asking for this year
is something of a substant weight.
Still I hope you'll find a way;
if I could make a wish, it was
a package sent from Holland
with saludos from Saint Nicholas.
A big box full of happiness,
but not for me, is what I chose.
The biggest size that you can get,
and then, well... maybe four of those?
One is for the children here
to thank them for the joy it brings
to see how they can show us the great happiness
in little things.
One is for their parents,
and especially the ones we try
to help in our clinic
when their pressure or their sugar's high.
One is for my collegues,
for the sad and joyful times we've got.
Because it's really nice to be here,
while, well, sometimes it's just not.
The last one's for my parents,
and my brothers, and it's also for
my friends who I won't see from now
a year and yet a little more.
Tell them that I'm doing fine,
and I will be around here stil
a little more, and if I find
the time to write them, that I will.
Give them all a giant hug,
and have a great fiësta there.
I don't know when I'll be back,
but we will be in touch next year!
And in the end I also had a musical second Christmas day: I ran into the visiting family of my American work- and housemate on the roof terrace: super musical and great singers! So what else could we do than singing Simon & Garfunkel in the sun on the roof: if there´d be an alternative for the traditional second christmas day coffee concert with the revalidation patients, than it would be just this! You can mail your proposals for record deals to the adress below :P. Lailalaiiii...