Coming at you live from a hotel bed, bored as hell, and hungry. Should be interesting.
I wanted to share my Christmas itinerary with you guys and also touch on the difficulties of traveling at Christmas.
Growing up we never had big traditional Christmas dinners at my house. There was no struggle to find the time to visit grandmas house, aunties, uncles, second grandmas… nothing like that. I remember spending Christmas in Mexico and Palm Springs during my pre-university days but the childhood memories are blurry. My mom still made it special by doing stockings and amazing gifts for us growing up but I don’t remember it being a big deal at all. Like imagining my mom stressing over a table setting is a hilarious vision.
Honestly, my fondest Christmas memory was going last minute shopping with my mom in downtown Edmonton. We went to Holt Renfrew and had a Bernard Callebaut chocolate (or 5) on the way out. I like to think of that as a Christmas tradition even tho I think we did it once, maybe twice.
Then when I started dating, I tried suppppper hard to make Chrismas a thing. Like stockings and matching onesies kind of thing. CRINGE. I spent Christmas with a partner’s family twice and HATED it. Can’t do small talk with my own aunts nevermind someone else’s. I spent lots of money on the perfect gifts, tried out all the holiday recipes that would obviously turn out inedible …. cookies are hard AF. literally.
So, with all that it shouldn’t be a surprise that Christmas celebrations are not that important to me. At least the Hallmark version isn’t…
Over the last few years, I have spent Christmas abroad and alone. Last year I was solo in Colombia and ate caramel/cheddar popcorn while watching The Man In The High Castle. The year before I was with a boyfriend in Hong Kong and ate a 9 course Michelin dinner(obviously my fav). The year before that I went to Bali -Ubud for yoga and got stuck in a rainstorm on my scooter. All cool experiences in their own right definitely not the Pinterest perfect version of Christmas.
Do I miss it? Yes. Somewhat.
I guess a part of me wishes that I had those connections with people that would make for a normal Christmas. A group of friends cheers-ing over a perfect meal, spending money on people because you want to, wearing cute flannel, celebrating with someone you actually love… but then I think about all the stress that comes around Christmas and I’m torn. Christmas has kinda turned inauthentic, you know?
Maybe I am doing it right, by acting like it’s just another day.
Christmas this year will be spent in Australia! And I am damn excited. I will be traveling with my girl Alisha which should be fun because she is very easy going and will balance me out perfectly. I’ve already booked us a table at Nobu for Christmas dinner because fresh sushi is much more appealing than dry turkey!
The last time I traveled with a friend? well. You can get a better sense of how that went here. So wish us luck 😉
I’m actually so relieved to be spending Christmas with a friend because honestly, the last two solo ones were depressing AF, it really got to me that I had no one to talk to except waiters and the barista who knew my order, bless.
I’m learning that I can handle like 1 week of solo travel before I get bored and unmotivated.
The hardest part about traveling during Christmas is obviously the cost! We missed a really great flight deal so my RT cost on flights for this trip is about $2000. Then with hotels and 1 Air BNB, it came to about $3000 (split between 2) so not a cheap trip. BUT HELL. Australia is definitely a once in a lifetime or maybe decade kinda thing. So I just gotta.
I’m super excited and have made a google doc for cafes, brunch spots, photo opps, etc… you get the point. Google Docs for trips are honestly the best. Nothing is worse than reaching a foreign place, starving and then not knowing where to eat. This has happened to me soooo many times and I’ve had some terrible meals because of it. BARCELONA… gut suckered into eating at an “Italian” place where the whole staff was Indian. hmmm.
Anyways, what are your Christmas plans? How do you usually celebrate? Do you need the fam-time or would you go on a solo trip instead?