Is it really almost Christmas? I told a customer today that I can't believe I can count on one hand the number of days til Christmas. I know we say that every year. "It comes so fast!" But really, you have to go shopping to feel Christmas here. And even then, it is still somehow different. There is no snow. We had a couple of near bone chilling days, but it is quite mild today. I went outside with a fleece! (I hear it is quite warm in the Chicagoland area, too) And the biggest thing is, THERE ARE VIRTUALLY NO CHRISTMAS DECORATIONS!! You can look in people's windows where you might spot a Christmas tree (they don't put them up a month early like Americans do, more like 1 or 2 weeks), but that is about it. I don't walk down the street and say "Ah, yes. It's Christmas."
Now, I will admit that if you head up the hill to city centre it would feel a bit more Christmasy. There's George St with it's cone shaped Christmas trees and Prince's St with all the shoppers (think Michigan Ave at Christmas!) and, of course, the German market and the winter wonderland. http://www.edinburghschristmas.com/index.html (but winter wonderland is really just a carnival). I did enjoy those festivities last year, but I just can't be bothered this year. Go to the flickr site and do a search for edinburgh christmas (you can search my photos, but be sure to do a search in everyone's photos). You will find some fun photos.
Well, we've got our Charlie Brown Christmas tree. He's a wee potted tree that we picked up at B&Q, sort of like Home Depot. We got our ornaments and lights there, to go along with the few sentimental orniments I brought. I just can't bring myself to pay full price for Christmas decorations, and since we didn't have a tree last year and we didn't know where we would be this year, I didn't buy any when they were on sale. It kind of makes me sad to think of all the nice ornaments and decorations we have back in the States and we have to do with so little here. It's like that with everything. But I think living here has taught us that we can live more simply. It's a good thing.
If I don't post before then, have a Happy Christmas everyone! We will be having a wee Christmas Eve lunch here with a few others as Josh is working Christmas day. You will be in our thoughts.