First, if for some reason you thought I was clever and had sorted out the Expat Carnival yesterday, you were wrong... I got my dates way mixed up, and it *is* at Sheepdip this week, as the below entry now points. Sorry for any confusion, and a hattip to the wonderful Phil for getting things sorted with a nifty topic. Yay!
But, enough about that.
I am counting down with excitement to this year's Hogmany celebration. My street party passes (for my and my lovely date) arrived a few days ago, along with "wollen hats" or "beanies" or "bonnets" or whatever they call toques in this country. They're very tacky either way, and I love mine to pieces. I'm wearing it right now, as I type this, in solidarity with my snow-bound friends back in Edmonton. And I'll be nice and not mention that the grass is still a vivid green here.
I'm really excited about it, in this way that is viewed mostly with bemusement amongst my friends here. Most of them have no interest, haven't been in years, if they've been at all. They don't see why a huge celebration in Edinburgh would be of any interest to me. What they don't understand is that I'm all excited about being able to do something in December without it being a deep freeze.
Plus, you know, I haven't done anything for New Years Eve in years. Last year, I worked. The year before, I was in China. Year before that, I worked. Year before that, I spent it in a gaming store playing a minitures game. Year before that, I worked. And probably worked the year before that, too. So, being able to go out and party and listen to loud music and be crazy, followed by a huge fireworks display? Oh yeah, I'm there.
Somewhere over the past week I've agreed to go do a polar dip on January 1st. (This is being arranged by my lovely date.) I don't quite know what I was thinking, but I guess I'm jumping into the Firth of Forth. I haven't quite figured out what a firth is (they tell me it's an estuary, but who believes that?), let alone what a Forth is, but I'm sure someone will tell me. Plus, I'm jumping into it, which will be fun. I hope.
I think I'm trying to cram a lot into that time period, so if anyone else in Scotland has suggestions on what I can do between December 27th and January 4th to make sure I don't spend time moping about not going back to Edmonton for the Wake, that would be great. I'm determined to have a very good, very big time.
(For people thinking they are unaware of some strange Canadian holiday, you aren't. The Wake is a party held every year on January 1st at my friend Raven's place. It's to put the old year to rest, and it's a lot of fun. There is much yummy food, many good friends, and lots of antics, none of which sound nearly as interesting when you describe them, so I won't. Trust me, it's the most fun you can have sober, and probably a lot more fun than things I've done drunk.)
As for the whole Christmas-y thing, I still haven't heard any carols or songs being played in the stores. Well, that's not entirely true. When I was buying stamps, I did hear that stupid "Simply Having a Wonderful Christmas Time" song briefly, but then it went away, and I was happy. I'm apparently going into all the wrong stores (or all the right ones, depending on your point of view), and even last night when I popped into a tacky touristy Scottish shop, they were playing "Brown Girl In the Rain". Not very Christmas-y at all. As it stands, I think I heard more Christmas music in China.
Oh well, I'm making up for it with lots of Christmas baking.
And, my last thought about Christmas and/or Hogmanay today is that I must get back to the German Market soon. I finally found a use for Vanilla Sugar, and now I have to go buy some. Because that's the way it works, right? You see something nifty you want, so you come up with a reason to purchase it, right?