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So, arrangements for getting back to (one of.. we're rather a spread out bunch) the familial lair for Christmas more or less sorted, and I've done my bit for the big dinner with placing a delivery order for much good cider, wine, vodka, and about 14lb of Gressingham duck. Now time to kick back at my new haunt, safe in the twin knowledge of some delicious food ahead, and ponies waiting back home. ^_^

As you probably know, I'm not a religious sort by any stretch of the imagination, but it's a time to enjoy good company and the spirit of the season regardless of exactly why. ^_^ For whatever reasons, I'm feeling happier about this Yule than in several years. I dare say the locale hardly hurts - wandering past Georgian architecture as a matter of routine, which may as well have sprung from a period drama of class vs circumstance, where you half-expect a big blue 1950s Police Box around the corner.. it does add sparkle to life.

Where will you be for the season? Travelling some distance, maybe?
I'm ashamed to say that I know almost nothing about Muslim holidays, despite having been in this part of the world for months. (This has sometimes been a problem - for example, when I failed to roll out of bed early enough to pick up my Azerbaijan visa and said to myself "No problem, I'll just come again tomorrow," not realizing that the next day was Eid al-Adha and the embassy would be closed for nearly a week.) I think the next religious holiday of consequence might be Nawruz, near the vernal equinox - I might not be here that long, but the month-long leadup seems fascinating in itself. I wish I could see Nawruz back in Tajikistan - apparently the biggest attractions there are huge tournaments of buzkashi, which if you're not familiar, is, um. A cultural experience.

I'm a volunteer, so I can take off whatever days I want! Not to mention travel when I want, within reason. It doesn't really feel right, though, to take off extra days around Christmas for no reason... I wouldn't be visiting family or celebrating anything, I'd just be hanging out and not doing what I came here to do. Although perhaps the solution is to make a vacation out of it. Take a trip up to the mountains. Hm. =:)

Have your travels ever brought you to this part of the world? If they do, by all means, come and drop by! =:)