Monday, December 3, 2012

Christmas in Oz: Things to love

Sure, I sometimes miss hot chocolate at Christmas, or bundling up to go out and see Christmas lights, but I do love Christmas in Australia. I've said it before, but the excitement of Christmas coming mixed with the relaxed vibe of summer is a great combination. Well, unless it gets too hot, cause then I have to cut someone. But mostly! It's great!

One aspect of the holidays that we love around here is Carols in the Park. All through December, pretty much every community puts on an outdoor carol sing. There's music, food, kids' entertainment, and Santa. People bring picnics, blankets to sit on--groups of friends will go together. It's like a summer music festival with a Christmas theme. Back in the US, I attended lots of Christmas carol services--but of course, they were mostly indoor or I spent them shivering outdoors. Those hushed church services have their charms as well, but we love the outdoor ones here.

Saturday was a very warm day, and because our house doesn't have air conditioning, we spent most of the day in the pool. I kept my crankiness at bay...but just barely. By evening, an air-conditioned ride in the car sounded perfect, so we drove to a Carols in the Park put on by a local radio station. Several friends were already there, so we all sat and listened to the music together. There was also ice cream.




There were some kid's games and activities on offer, and Nate and his buddy wanted to ride in the little jeeps that were set up in the parking lot. When they got to the front of the line, they were told that they had to have an adult ride with them. Lucky, lucky me--I was the only parental figure in the area. So, picture this-- (or actually, don't.) I had to sit up behind them on the back of the jeep, and put one leg on either side of the driver, so I could have a foot on the gas and brake pedals. And also lean forward to grab the wheel if necessary.

Hmmm. You might notice from the photo above, I was not attired for jeep driving by-proxy. And that dress did not have a lot of "give" to it. I looked at the guy running the ride. "Um, I'm not exactly dressed for this," I said. In trademark Aussie fashion he waved away my concern, "Aw, she'll be right!" And off we went, round and round this little track, I'm sure with me flashing the unfortunate bystanders each time. Of course, the boys jerked the wheel too hard before I could stop them, which caused us to hurtle into the tires set up in the center of the track. The attendant was a little annoyed with us, so not only was I scandalous, I was chastened for my failure to supervise, too! And then my flip flop broke when I tried to modestly disembark the jeep! You just can't win sometimes.

Wardrobe malfunctions notwithstanding, it was a lovely evening. The music was beautiful, the lights were sparkly, the weather was cooling down (mercifully).  Christmas in Oz is pretty great.

And luckily, I'll probably never see the people at the jeep track again! And that is the best gift of them all.

10 comments:

  1. ha ha ha! that's what I say to console myself after an embarassing event - we'll probably never see each other again and even if we did the chances of them remembering wouldn't be great - it helps me feel better:)
    you guys were a lot braver than us though to 'weather' the carols, it was way too hot for us, and we do have a/c (sorry!) :)

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  2. OK I'm dying here! I could totally picture the entire thing. Ha! Ha! Ha! So funny girl. :)

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  3. Love it, and love the relaxed Aussie attitude to panty flashing.

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  4. You are hilarious! And such a good sport! Sounds like a very nice evening in the park with kids, friends, little vehicles, and ice cream. Even a busted flip flop, ala Jimmy Buffet. Hoping y'all have a cooler rest of the month. Is that hoping for too much?

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  5. Just piping in to defend the honor of modest Aussie girls all over! Flashing of panties is not cool Amy!

    But the rest of the post is awesome. Nothing like a cold seafood xmas lunch followed by a dip in the pool!

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  6. Why no airconditing? Having a very warm December here in Pensacola and I find it a little depressing. I am thankful for the low powerbills though! I really enjoy reading your blog Amy.

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    1. Sandy, that is a question I have often asked myself, while shaking my fist at the heavens! ;) To be honest though, most of the year the weather is mild enough that we don't need it--and we have a fireplace and oil heaters for winter. But there are a few weeks a year in summer where, man, it's stinking hot! And on those days the house heats up pretty quickly! Many newer homes have ducted A/C and most homes have units installed in certain rooms. We're just lucky, I guess! :)

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  7. I kept reading "Carlos in the Park" and thinking "who is this Carlos guy? He must be some rich philanthropist, throwing all of these parties for the community."

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    1. LOL! Yes, that Carlos...such a stand-up guy!

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