Well, it's been a long while since I posted -through terminal essay stress, the joys of slush (not snow - the best we get is sleet, apparently, in Manchester - to my eternal annoyance there's six inches of snow on the ground in my home town of Bury, not half an hour's journey away, for the first time in twelve years! It WOULD snow whilst I'm at uni, wouldn't it) - and the always fun prospect of revising unkown medieval somethings for an exam in January. But I thought I'd take time out of writing depressing essays about post-modern theatre to write about Christmas.
Christmas - or rather, December, is my month. It's cold, miserable, the darkest time of the year - and then right in the middle of it all we have a bright festival of glittery lights and sparkly things to cheer everyone up. Everyone gets tired, yes - but we also get hopeful. Even competitive - in halls the competition is vicious about who has the best decorated flat. My dad's enthusiastically offered 100-foot string of shiny snowflakes was, perhaps, a bit overdoing it - our hall looks like a shrine to the Norse ice giants - but the thought's there. I'm even in a campus Nativity Play this year, for the first time since I was five years old.
What IS interesting, though, is a theory my mother put forward about Christmas. That we need the glitter to fend off the darkness. I mean, technically, Christmas on the 25th December tactfully covered all the old pagan festivals with good old human sacrifice and huge bonfires - but even before Christmas, practically every ancient civilisation has some sort of winter festival where lights are lit and the dull blankness of the ordinary world outside fought off for at least another day. And round about now, there's a patch of damp depression (and colds) that needs to be fought off with a little bit of snow, magic, lights, and Christmas.
This year we're having a fancy-dress 'Tim Burton' Christmas - mainly to humour my little sister, who has recently bought into the 'Twilight' obsessives. It should be fun - not least with a patch of dark ghoulish fun riding alongside the Christmas merriment. An interesting mix for everyone...