One of the things I love about living in the Northeast is the genuine change of seasons. This is difficult for many to understand, as they move to Florida as soon as they possibly can, and claim not to miss the cold weather for an instant.
It's not that I like cold weather, mind you. I'm told it's 20 degrees at the moment and that the high for today will be 30. I do have to go out--I have a doctor's appointment at 11:30--or otherwise I might just opt for staying in the cozy apartment all day. As it is, I've got that long walk to Washington Street, and while I'm there I might as well go to the bank and pick up some groceries. I'll wear lots of layers and duck into a warm building if necessary on my travels.
Everybody from Fairhope sympathizes with me about the cold weather. But this kind of cold adds to the feeling of Christmas, with God throwing in a few snow flurries as if for punctuation. Hoboken is dressed for the holidays, and for once I'm glad Frank Sinatra made so many Christmas albums--his gentle voice is piped into businesses all over town. I may pop into Albini's Pharmacy, a beautifully wood-paneled remnant of bygone days, just to hear its selection of Sinatra seasonal numbers. (I'll buy something innocuous to justify my visit.)
There is a sign at Our Lady of Grace Church that there will be a program of carols next weekend. The lights are up everywhere, and the A & P has its Christmas music piped in. Yesterday I was stopped in my tracks there listening to "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas," trying to decide if that really could have been Barbra Streisand, giving a restrained rendition for once. Anybody know if there is a singer with a similar voice who just sings the song and doesn't try to impress us with her acting virtuosity at the same time? Celine Dion? Susan Boyle? (That would be a great CD--Susan Boyle's Christmas!)
Week after next I'll travel to upstate New York to visit the daughter and grandsons for the actual holiday. In the meantime, I'm gettin more Christmas than I expected. I picked up a little bourbon and rum and made my own egg nog from scratch yesterday, and I keep thinking I brought fresh pecans back from Alabama and just might use them in something delicious.
A little Christmas is doing me good. I like that it's cold at this time of year. There is no snow on the ground here, and the puddles from a few days ago have dried up so there's no ice to worry about. There might be snow by the big day, and there is certain to be in Kingston, but, whether or not, Christmas is in the air. The gentlemen are merry and the nights are silent. The heart is full. Have a drink of egg nog--not prepackaged, please--and sing a song of the season.