There was a time when the thought of “the holiday season” didn’t make me cringe. A time when I looked forward to decorating the Christmas tree, when I loved wrapping gifts and I couldn’t wait to play holiday music on the piano.
That time is long, long gone.
Now I’m the local Scrooge, bah humbug-ing around Salt Lake City at the first sign of holiday decorations. (Which, I might add, started the second week of October. Christmas trees in October, people!)
Last year I survived Christmas, then escaped to Washington D.C. the next day where I spent a week sightseeing the capitol’s monuments, visiting memorials and museums and eating as much food as possible.
This year, I’m going even more extreme. I decided to trick myself into counting down the days until Christmas by leaving on Christmas Eve to Prague. I have tickets to see my most favorite opera, Rusalka (that I saw in February in New York City), and The Marriage of Figaro in the only theater left in existence where Mozart himself performed. I’ll finish with the Nutcracker ballet (continuing a tradition started last year in DC) before heading to Vienna.
In Vienna I will ring in the new year at the New Year’s Eve ball at the Hofburg Palace, then see an opera about that very ball at the Vienna State Opera (Strauss’ Die Fledermaus) followed by Rigoletto the next day. I have a ball gown with opera gloves. I have a winter wardrobe to keep me warm. And I have a to do list that will entertain me for days. Twelve days, to be exact.
Needless to say, I’ve been counting down to Christmas since July (when I bought my opera tickets), feeling like a little kid anxiously awaiting Santa and his reindeer. And while that doesn’t make me appreciate cheesy Christmas lights on my neighbors’ houses any more, it does make me feel a little bit of that so-called “Christmas spirit” everyone keeps yacking about.
So in light of that, Merry Christmas to all my lovely readers! Thank you for visiting my blog. I will have plenty of posts about my adventures in Prague and Vienna in a few weeks, but in the meantime, follow me on Instagram or facebook where I’ll be bombarding everyone’s feed with as many photos of Eastern Europe as possible.