On the first Friday in December for over a decade we have gone to the Auckland Symphony Orchestra’s Christmas Carol concert at the Town Hall.
It was the event the children really missed last year in Romania, although they ended up with something that matched it, and they had really missed it the year before in Laos, where there was not a hint of Christmas apart from our daily family devotions.
So we went again this year. Along with most of our friends.
And afterwards we drove up Franklin Road, one of the few streets in our not-totally-Americanised country with Christmas lights, and headed to the end of the tradition: McDonalds for ice creams despite the late hour.
Was it just because we have not been for two years, or was the music absolutely amazing? Pastor Ron’s booming Polynesian voice released “O Holy Night” like every other year, the congregation joined the mass choir in other traditional carols, and listened in awe at the most GLORIOUS singing EVER of the Battle Hymn of the Republic.
My mind wandered back to Laos.
No carols, just pop songs.
No Christ, just monks.