This Christmas has been remarkable in that it hasn’t really felt like Christmas at all. Not just because of the hot weather, the total lack of any decorations, booze and mince pies consumed. The biggest difference is the silence. No Christmas music. Usually the biggest Pavlovian trigger (in England anyway) for Christmas is around early November, when it’s a horrible cold grey day and you retreat in to a shop on the high street and they’re playing Slade. And would you believe it, It’s Chriiiisstmaaaaaaasssssss again. This time here in Bangladesh I’ve yet to hear any Slade, Wizzard, Bing, George Michael, or any of the usual shite. I quite miss the gentle warbling of some pubescent choristers, but other than that, it’s been incredibly refreshing, and an experience I would recommend to everyone – sorry Noddy.
I’m about to go to Dhaka for the day itself, where we’ll have a real home-made Christmas pudding which Tom has spent nearly a month over, The Muppets’ Christmas Carol, The Great Escape, and the new Bond film to watch (I’ve already seen it, just to ensure that it will be a repeat for me on Boxing Day. Love that tradition.). And we’re getting real cheese, which has come all the way from England especially with Georgia‘s mum.
I don’t know about the main course, but the main point of Christmas dinner is less what it is, more that you eat too much of it, so I can guarantee that’s going to happen. All in all, I’m looking forward to it. And then back to work for everyone (you only get one public holiday here – which is fair enough).
I hope everyone reading this has a lovely old Christmas too – and I want to leave you with my one of my own favourite Christmas songs. Maybe this is apt for our situation in Muslim Bangladesh, but it came out for last Christmas 2005 and is still for me the best modern Christmas song ever, taking over from The Pogues’ ‘Fairytale of New York’ as a fantastic sing-along story of domestic break-up, depression and misery and loneliness, with a beautiful plodding bass riff, rock solid beat and of course the obligatory Christmas bells over the top. It’s a bit like how the Strokes might sound now if they were any good. Find it, buy it, download it, enjoy it – ‘Christmas is Cancelled’ – The Long Blondes. Cheers.