Be Happy Anyway

Hi there. I doubt that the folks at Bon Marché intended for their holiday decorations to be prescient, but that’s certainly how things worked out. Right now a whole lot of things are up in the air.

I could rant again about the Gilets Jaunes, but I just won’t. Not right now, anyway. I will mourn the lack of a Santa at my local shopping mall. Seriously. They have the Santa Chair, flanked by two little child chairs. They have the sign that tells you how much this ritual photo op will cost: 15 euros! They have me, hoping to get Jacques in, finally, for his picture with Santa. This is the first year I have had him all cleaned and groomed, but no, no Santa. Even a Santa in a yellow vest would be better than no Santa at all. Too bad.

I am doing my holiday post early because I’m headed to Istanbul in the morning. I need, need, I say, a carpet for the living room, so I’ll head to a friend’s shop to pick something out. I may do a rather nerdy post on Turkish vs Persian rugs; I’ll try to keep it brief. I’ll be connecting with an old buddy for a photo shoot in some workshops. Istanbul has changed, not for the better, but I still love my time there.

Then it’s the holidays. I’ll be insanely busy doing dinner for seven, eight if you count Jacques, who has the Beggin’ Face down cold. Among them are a new friend, Danica, and her family. Danica works with refugees — the still-undocumented ones who live in camps. Some things are being done to pull them into the system, though not enough. Danica collects things like diapers, which she distributes. So hey, I’ll donate a few things and make a nice dinner. She’s already doing enough.

That’s my strategy for getting through a crazy time. I’ll be grateful for what I have and I’ll share more than I normally would; diapers and sleeping bags are the least I can do. I’ll pull friends and loved ones close. I’ll hope it’s enough to pull us through.

It looks like folks are doing something similar for the kids in the photo that Danica sent me — used without permission, but they’re so adorable I couldn’t resist. Apart from Jacques, I think they are the cutest beings I have seen all year. I should at least make clear that I have no idea whether these kids are refugees.

So. Celebrate anyway. This year the gods are not smiling, so we’ll have to take care of ourselves.

14 thoughts on “Be Happy Anyway

  1. As I opened the laptop this morning there was an offer on flights to Istanbul….if only! I would love to go back.
    Enjoy yourself there and have a super Christmas and New Year among friends.

  2. Dear Lynn, please publish a report from Istanbul! In the meantime your reports generally illuminate and delight!
    In the last photo with the children I love the steadfast gaze of the man accompanying them.
    To a happier new year!

    1. Thanks! Actually I’m already thinking about the trip in terms of how I can post without repeating myself. And that photo…. Who are they all looking at?

        1. Lost Santa? That cute little sandbag doorstop Santa? I’m sure he’s around somewhere…. Oh, you must mean the Santaless chair in the mall. There are actually a fair number of toy Santas here in Istanbul, and the freezing weather to go with them, too. Maybe….

  3. Enjoy Istanbul! We look forward to posts about your journey


    Sent from my mobile (pls pardon the typos)


  4. What? No Jacques in Christmas costume photos? Or maybe in a yellow vest. I am desolate. Oh well, fine, just fine, go to Istanbul and have a great time anyway. No, seriously…have a wonderful holiday!

    1. I know! I got him a little elf cap and everything. I’ll have to do something when I get to the house. Right now I hear a rug merchant calling my name. “Lynn, oh Lynn….” See? I bet you hear it, too.

      1. Somehow I got the mental image of you sitting in the bazaar and singing (to the tune of We Wish You a Merry Christmas):
        Now bring me a Persian carpet
        Now bring me a Persian carpet
        Now bring me a Persian carpet
        And bring it right here.

  5. I am eager to see the shots of Istanbul, which I’ve never visited but always dreamed of. And to learn about Turkish vs. Persian rugs. I visited some carpet-makers in Morocco and was mightily impressed.
    My kid and I want to do some kind of volunteer work on Christmas. However, despite the impressive organization of the site, there doesn’t seem to be anything in this region. Years ago, before I was conscripted into enduring the in-laws every holiday, I delivered Meals on Wheels, in order to give the regular drivers the day off. But I don’t think they do that here–the municipal employees still make the rounds.

    1. Some of the places on the list I posted seem to be part of a national group. Mostly, though, it looks pretty haphazard. Maybe something with the Croix Rouge?

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