Friday, December 21, 2007

Hoopla!!! Hoopla!!!

We don't call them memes anymore, they say that is a dreaded word,
that's why they invented a new word for it ... A HOOPLA !!!
First of all, let me taste this word and then I'll tell you what it reminds me of.

HOOPLA ... hmmmm...

That name kind of makes me think of things suddenly appearing or quickly dissapearing again!
I mean, you know when David Copperfield makes a plane dissapear, they lift the cloth and HOOPLA ... it's gone!
They lift it again and HOOPLA ... it's there again! And you never saw it coming!
Only here in this town, I think you can see them coming allright!
You can run but you cannot hide, or the other way around, I don't know!
Anyway... yes, I've been tagged, Sandy did this to me! ...
And here are the rules:

1. List 12 random things about yourself that have to do with Christmas
2. Please refer to it as a ‘hoopla’ and not the dreaded ‘m’-word
3. You have to specifically tag people when you’re done. None of this “if you’re reading this, consider yourself tagged” stuff is allowed…then nobody ends up actually doing it. The number of people who you tag is really up to you — but the more, the merrier to get this ‘hoopla’ circulating through the Blog-o-sphere. 4. Please try and do it as quickly as possible. The Christmas season will be over before we know it.

So here we go.
Oh my god TWELVE things? ???
1. I have a very early memory, I don't know if it was Christmas or not, but it has a very Christmassy feeling to it, so...
I must have been a toddler still. It had been snowing very hard, I saw huge amounts of snow.
The smaller you are the huger the walls of snow seem to be, don't they?
We went to my grandmothers and they fetched us with a horse and carriage.
I can still see the horse in front of us, ploughing through the snow,
it has left a Dickensy picture in my memory, looking a bit like this ... See?
Looks Christmassy enough, now does it?

2. I remember decorating the tree with my mom and dad. They kept the decorations in a box up in the attic, and my dad would climb up there to get them. When that box opened, we discovered all those little treasures again, wrapped in very thin craccled paper. We had to take turns to hang them, and be very careful not to break them.
3. We had a little silvery bird with a clip at its feet. It had a little white brush for a tail. And it still sits in my parents tree every year.
4. When I was a very little girl about 8 or 9, I think, we attended the midnight mass with my grandmother's sister and her family. Afterwards we returned to the house and had a meal together.
I can still remember what the church looked like, it was something like this ...

5. When I was a little bit older, we used to celebrate Christmas at my mothers cousin's house.
She always had a huge Christmas tree, way too much food, and awesome presents.
I remember the cartoons on the television, the pope having a speech,
and an anual ski-jumping contest in Aspen or something ...
6. In the seventies it was very fashionable to decorate the tree in very weird colours, electric blue for instance. I did that once too! Awful!
7. When I was seventeen, I remember doing a dance performance in the church at midnight.
We all had white body stockings, and coloured ribbons at our arms.
It was a very modern dance, and the music was a jazzy version of Glory Hallilujah.
8. Years later, in Meetkerke, where my grandparents used to live, there was a very special midnight mass. They had real sheep, even a donkey, all of this in a midieval setting of a very tiny very old church ... I never attended it, and I still feel I missed something extraordinary.
9. At Christmas family parties one of us tends to get very drunk.
Last year it was my father, the year before it was my sister...
even my brother in law once held the toilet pot in a loving embrace once.
10. I plead guilty for last year ... we made gin fizz in a cocktail shaker!
We started to throw the shaker at each other.
Can any of you imagine after a couple of gin fizzes things got slightly out of hand?
We had way too much fun shaking and throwing ...

... and then my sister got the damned thing smack in the middle of her face.
I will not publish the messy pictures my sister took!
11. This year's hot new item was the personalized agenda my sister made for all of us!
It is a wonderful way to enjoy the pictures of previous events, parties and hollidays. It was a gift for my fiftieth birthday, and now everybody either has one or wants one!

12. I've been married to Santa Claus for 26 years now, but sssssssssshhhhhhttttt! Ho ho ho!

It is stunning how very old memories all come back to you while doing this ... Mmm.. Hoopla!

Now, who will I tag? I have to, they told me, so...
And the winners are ....