And To All A Good Night

Apology in advance- this is going to be a really earnest, non-cynical post, so you can skip it if you’re not into that kind of thing.

I have been in the best mood lately. I’ve been feeling a lot like this little girl:

I’m at the parents’ house right now, and tonight, all my relatives on my mom’s side are coming over. There will be tenderloin and my sister’s Martha Stewart cookies and pierogies (we’re kind of obsessed with being Irish, but Christmas Eve is the one time of year we remember that we’re Polish, too) and, because it involves my mom and her siblings, lots of gossip about people from Lowell.

I feel like this year I’ve gotten more into Christmas than I have in previous years. I’ve been busy, but not too busy to be excited about Christmas. What have I been doing over the past month? Well, listening to my Christmas playlist, which has grown to over 400 songs. Watching all my favorite Christmas movies and marveling at how “To my big brother George, the richest man in town” makes me tear up every single time. Having an early Christmas celebration with my dad’s side of the family. Going to a fun office holiday party on a boat. Having two smaller work parties, one at a bowling alley and one at a restaurant in the North End. Making buche de noel, which turned out better than I expected. Going to a fun party at Erin, Lindsey, and Jackie’s. Doing my Christmas shopping. Seeing the wonderful Christmas Revels show, of which Julie is a cast member, the other night. And a lot of singing!

I haven’t talked much about the chorus that I’m in, but now seems like a good time to start. I really love to sing, and I’ve had so much fun singing with this chorus. We had our concert a couple of weeks ago and sang some great pieces- the Bach motet “Lobet Den Hernn,” Purcell’s “Come Ye Sons of Art,” and a very fun Christmas cantata. Also, I can look around the room at a chorus rehearsal and think, Everyone here is nice. I could have a great conversation with anyone in this room.

This is something that has consistently amazed me since I graduated from college. When I was growing up, and even in college, I always wondered when drama and cliquiness ended and whether people ever got nicer. But now I’ve worked at two different companies where almost everyone I met was genuinely nice. And reading a horrible story in the Globe like this is followed the next day with a wonderful one like this. Sometimes I feel like all we ever hear about are the terrible people of the world—they’re the ones who make the news. But the older I get, the more convinced I am of what Atticus tells Scout at the end of To Kill a Mockingbird: that most people are nice, when you finally see them.

Merry Christmas, all!

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