Wednesday, December 02, 2009
I know I've said it before, even as a southern Californian (where December temperatures are regularly in the 70s and 80s), I'm not crazy about the idea of a hot Sydney Christmas. I'm somehow comforted by the fact that though I won't wake up on Christmas morn to find a sled or new ski boots, some other kid on my continent will.
What do Australian kids get from their grandmothers instead of hand-knit sweaters and mittens? How does Santa's sleigh fare through the outback's red dirt? What are Hindu and Buddhist kids supposed to sing at the school holiday assemblies if not songs about winter wonderlands filled with frosty snowmen and jingle bells? I'd guess they sing about the jacaranda blooming while the kookaburra nests, but folks aren't super PC down under so the Hindu and Buddhist kids probably sing about baby Jesus along with everyone else.
Anyway, I don't like hot Christmas, but Sydney practically specializes in celebration so I'm really starting to enjoy some of the decorations and festivities here. Mickey and I attended a tree-lighting event last week at Martin Place. It was aimed at kids, but we still enjoyed the carols and the fireworks show (what a surprise) that followed the tree-lighting.
Nostalgia set in when we recalled our wintry romp around Zurich taking pictures of its more traditional holiday display in December 2007 with our friends Thao and Martin. Zurich wins points for its elegant trees with understated ornaments, but Sydney also wins in my book for replicating the Vivid experience by projecting beautiful, colored patterns on the side of St Mary's cathedral.
Indeed, it may be hot, but it's no less festive here in Sydney. Have a look.
Zurich: The Credit Suisse tree in Paradeplatz
Sydney: Colors projected on St Mary's cathedral
Zurich: Real tree with nearly real candles
Sydney: Buff, platform shoed Santa riding a shark, surely a disgrace to Swiss images of Sami Claus :)