On the eve of Xmas eve

You figure the Xmas season is when life in an urban environment gets a little crazy and people get a little neglectful of their blogs and things. But that is not my excuse.

Xmas has actually been pretty painless for us this year. Procrastination always helps: We still haven't put up any Xmas decor, save for the Xmas table runner. And instead of sending paper cards, I decided I would save some trees and send pseudo e-cards (i.e. an email with an image attached, as opposed to a graphic/animation file that's actually designed to serve as an animated/interactive card) --- which I just sat down and emailed all in the last twelve hours.

But I also did some of my Xmas shopping online (thanks, Sarah!) and managed to pick up the rest without being mortally wounded by the downtown shopping crowds. And my mother has just informed me that we don't have to bring anything for ye olde Xmas family gathering besides the homemade fruitcake I offered to buy.

Of course, the latter mercy is double-edged: we're absolved because Terz will have to, er, work on Xmas. My grandfather has decreed that he would like us to all take a family photograph on Xmas Day. Okay, "decreed" is a little harsh because my grandfather is the mildest person in the world and doesn't decree anything. But precisely because he so rarely expresses a preference, that when he does, it takes on the air of a decree. Plus Terz owes him a favour from a photo project last year.

So on Xmas day, we will haul Terz's camera, lenses, lights et al to the family gathering place. In the evening, Terz will somehow organise 44 members of the grand extended family (including 6 children and 2 babes-in-arms) into an aesthetically pleasing arrangement in the garden and try to get everyone to focus and smile, or at least not look daft, at the same time.

Yesterday, my mother called to ask, "What if it rains?"


* * *

So that's Xmas in my family. For my best friend, Xmas came early in the form of an extremely cute baby boy, who currently alternates his time between sleeping, deigning to open one eye at us and snuggling with his mommy. He's also good at pooping and clutching adult fingers.

Baby finger

It is miraculous to think that he will never be this small again, and certainly not this wrinkly for quite a long while.

While I was visiting yesterday, the father came in with the paperwork for registering the baby's birth. He needed me to write his name in Chinese characters on some form, since my best friend's writing hand was sort of occupied with cradling the baby. (Daddy is pretty much Chinese-illiterate.) It was only after I'd done the deed --- fortunately, with none of those excruciatingly complicated Chinese words involved --- that I found out that I'd been writing on the birth certificate itself and that my feeble Chinese handwriting would be immortalised thereon.

Hopefully, the kid doesn't think his mom's Chinese handwriting (on a related form) or mine is the pinnacle of Chinese calligraphy or anything.

After I left, the best friend SMSed me to say she thinks the boy looks like the Claymation character, Morph.


* * *

Other things I have been busy with include work (both looking for it and experimenting with different types thereof) and entertaining Stellou, home for the holidays, to whom we can credit this gem of a remark:
"I can find my way places. I am a worm."
I also cleared out my desk at what will soon be my former workplace, so that the guy inheriting it can move in before the new (school) year begins. One last errand there next week, then I'll turn in my security pass and other work-related paraphernalia, and I will be a free agent.


Happy holidaze, everyone.


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At 12/23/2005 12:33 am , Blogger ragingyoghurt said...

in which "worm" is pronouced as one truncated syllable, without the "r"?

me too, i'm doing email xmas cards... which is actually a step up from normal, which is no xmas cards. yes, i am the grinch that ignored xmas.

what the hell (see, i will invoke hell on the eve of xmas eve), i shall send you one too. ho ho.

At 12/23/2005 9:34 am , Blogger Ondine said...

And my mother has just informed me that we don't have to bring anything for ye olde Xmas family gathering

Your mother is a wise woman. We are lugging back ham that is probably heavier than the baby whose hand is in the picture.

God help us and send Russell Crowe in the opposite direction to distract the customs officers.

At 12/23/2005 9:22 pm , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now that he's home he's also good at screaming and keeping mummy up. Not to mention peeing in his eye. DOn't ask...

At 12/24/2005 11:25 am , Blogger stellou said...

WAH! i got quoted twice, once even in pink. i like you A LOT. and thank you for neither of those quotes being: "oh shit shit shit sorry late sorry."

eh eh i tell you lah, you are a joy and no one deserves a torn fingernail less than you.


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