Brian Edwards Media

Posts Tagged 'Auckland City Mission'

Hiding from Christmas

I don’t look forward to Christmas. I wouldn’t go so far as to say I dread it, but it looms on the horizon like a small malevolence – somewhere between weeding the garden and root canal.

I can’t remember when this antipathy started, but it seems to go back to childhood. I suppose reactions are tempered by early experience – and whether your Christmas presents tended towards new bikes or new knickers.

My British Nana insisted that we ate Christmas lunch dressed in our stiff and formal Sunday best, facing an array of roasts, Christmas pudding, Christmas cake, dried fruit, nuts and mince pies – in Hawke’s Bay heat that could melt the asphalt on the roads. After lunch the men would rush to discard their suits for shorts and singlets and do mysterious things under car bonnets – headless bodies apparently being devoured by engines. The women, having spent the morning preparing lunch, spent a good part of the afternoon washing up and then preparing the leftovers for dinner.

Christmas was about the only time our family ever took a drink. Needless to say, a glass-and-a-half was all it took for euphoria to set in, quickly followed by the revival of decades-old feuds and resentments.

So when I joined the NZBC’s announcing staff in my late teens and discovered that the young and unattached were expected to cover Christmas Day shifts and release the married and encumbered into the bosoms of their families, colleagues got trampled in my rush to volunteer.   Read the rest of this entry »

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