The birth of Jesus Christ is again just around the corner. This is the reason why I already smell the spirit of Christmas as I see those houses adorned with Christmas lights all around. But only a couple of houses are observing this flamboyance.
In Southern California, one can tell if the one living in a particular house is a true Christian in faith and in belief. This is so because he sees to it that Christmas decorations are all around his house, despite the high cost of electricity, not to mention the danger that lurks behind once the one of the lights is busted so that a short circuit may occur.
But this time of year only makes one’s heart grows ponder. Of course, the feeling of nostalgia creeps in and fill a void that makes a person feels the longing of going home. This is true among expatriates, especially Asians, whose Christmas tradition and practice are heralded the world over as exceptional in taste and in color. Notably, Christmas carols are sung at the touch of dawn on Dec. 16. While well-designed lanterns adorn most homes, especially in the Philippines where a national contest on latern-making and design is being held on a yearly basis.
However, Christmas has also its drawbacks among the expatriates, particularly those who send money to their families back home. Perhaps, everybody notices the sliding value of the US dollar against other currencies. In the Philippines, overseas workers are complaining that their dollar remittances are not getting anywhere at this time because the peso was buoyed by a strong deluge of foreign investments and the enormous remittances that the OFWs pump into the country’s financial system.
Anyway, it’s Christmas time and we can do nothing about it. Otherwise, one has to simply stop sending money back home, if he wants to protest the impacts of sagging dollar. But nobody in his right mind could afford to allow his family go hunger, especially during the Christmas holidays.