So now the whirlwind begins, the last few weeks of work before Christmas. The time of preparations and lists, of calendars and reminders. Now we gather all the objects we have been collecting for the last few months and start to toss them skywards: presents - hupla, food - hupla, decorations - hupla, wrapping - hupla, posting - hupla, travel - hupla, travel - hupla, family time - hupla, quiet time - hupla. So now we juggle with all our might so that we might create, up there in the sky, our perfect Dickensian Christmas picked out by wisps of snowfall that settle like icing sugar.
Of course, as any juggler will tell you, it's not the amount of objects that you chuck up there, it's the fact that they're all different shapes and sizes. They spin on their own axis, and react to gravity in their own special ways. This is the Christmas solar system, bodies moving to their own timescale and with their own climates that we hope to collate at one time, in one place together. This unique alignment we idealise as a natural occurrence, but know takes the skill of a cosmic billiard player to place the planets 'just so'.
In my experience Christmas tends to bring out the 'show off' in our natures, which is why I believe we tend to set fire to our objects (very tempting to put balls there) - to make the display more spectacular for the spectators and more risky for ourselves. This masochistic impulse stems from our desire that this should be a perfect time of year - an impulse, that despite the strains of 'bah humbug' that are hard wired into my DNA, I feel myself drawn to each year.
No matter the Christmas you plan - family, friends, quiet or holiday, it must be the perfect example of it. And this is where we get into trouble. This is when keeping those flaming objects up there in the sky becomes pressured, and when that happens that is all that matters. Must keep them up, can't let them drop, higher, higher, whoah - nearly lost it then, c'mon, c'mon, just a little longer!
And then it's over, and you're left juggling and don't really know how to stop, except that to carry on seems silly. You're not sure if it was perfect, but it happened... oh.
Next year though, next year'll be perfect.