The calendar says ‘tis the season in Melbourne, but the thermometer takes issue. How can it be Christmas when the temperature pushes upward towards 100 degrees Fahrenheit and the natives roam the streets in shorts and t-shirts?
This is clearly no place for a bearded fat man in a red wool suit and boots. And in secular Australia, there’s little evidence of the original “reason for the season” in the music in the stores and the commercials on the TV.
But—lest I sound too bah-humbugish—I hasten to add there is a certain spirit in the air, a general lifting of the mood, a willingness to make these few days different from the ordinary. It feels good to focus on giving rather than getting, on gratitude in place of our usual grumbling, on expressing love instead of taking our loved ones for granted.
There’s something a babe in a manger can accomplish that all the blustering power-brokers of this world just can’t pull off. So like shepherds in adoration we marvel that one time “unto us was born in the city of David a savior…”
Joy and I got back to Melbourne in time for the holidays with Candy and Michael and family. We left Tillamook Sunday afternoon December 18 after the brief graveside service for JoAnn Widmer, who died shortly after midnight on Friday. One of our best Christmas gifts this year was the time we spent with JoAnn and George and their family, as I reported in the last post. There we experienced family and community life at its best. The memories will stay with us as long as we have a mind to remember with.
Our Oregon Interlude is over. We now pick up the thread of our Next Phase, which will keep us in Australia into January.
As our Christmas greeting to you here are a few of the pictures Joy took along the way which we couldn’t include in earlier lawsonsontheloose.net posts. This is really a two-part post; her pictorial retrospective needs more than the space available in this one. The first post in 2017 will feature many others.
OUR “NEXT PHASE” THROUGH THE LENS
LAKE DISRICT ENGLAND
May your holidays be blessed and your new year be bright indeed. Roy and Joy