Strange Place to be at Christmas

On the way of the dark night trip, your shining nose would be very useful

Today I sang my first Christmas song in Japanese. My teacher didn’t know that Santa’s reindeer had names and was quite surprised that we had named the one with the shining nose. She also thought that the song might have been a Japanese song that I happened to know an English translation of. But no, the song was written by the American songwriter Johnny Marks.

It’s strange being away from home when it’s so close to Christmas. Marty did point out to me that the only other time I’ve been away from home at Christmas was in 1992 when I went to Japan to visit him.

The Japanese have started to celebrate Christmas as a commercial holiday. I’ve seen some very odd things in the shops that claim to be traditional Christmas items. And strange signs that say things like “x-mas lapping set’s in store”. There’s a huge green Santa close to our apartment and I’ve seen pictures of Santa on his sleigh being pulled by what looked like a goose and a cow. I believe that Christmas is a romantic holiday in Japan and that men give gifts to women on Christmas Eve and that just like St. Valentine’s Day at home it’s not good for a woman to be by herself on Christmas Eve.

Christmas cards are really expensive – I think it’s cost me around £2.50 per card. The shops are full of imported American cards but I prefer the Japanese ones even if I can’t work out what how you display some of them.

I’ve been meaning to take some pictures of the Christmas decorations that can be seen in the area we are staying in. Hopefully I will remember to take my camera out with me some night this week. Christmas decorations in Japan are taken down on the 26th December so I’ll need to do this sometime soon. I have taken some pictures this week but was more interested in trying to capture reflections than Christmas decorations.

Tokyo Tower Reflected in a Car Window

2 Responses to “Strange Place to be at Christmas”

  1. Ciarán Says:

    well since you Japanese doesnt really have a word for christmas ill say Feliz Navidad. Christmas is starnge here – its all decorated just like Ireland except the fake snow and reindeers just don’t ring true.
    will yous be havin turkey? have a good day and take it easy

  2. karen Says:

    Well I’ll say Merry Christmas! I haven’t set my computer up to allow me to write that in katakana for you. Must really get round to doing that in the New Year.

    Have a great Christmas in Vilcabamba. I won’t be having turkey because even though I could spend a small fortune and buy one from one of the international supermarkets I don’t have an oven to cook in it! But my stepdad kindly offered to send me picture of the ones he’s cooked…