At this time of year the question "what do you want for Christmas?" is one that I get asked regularly. But I really do not understand the reason for the question!
I am fortunate enough that most things I really want I either have or could readily go out and get. And the things that I want but which are too costly for me to buy for myself are also too costly for me to ask anyone else to give me as a Christmas gift. So the question of what I want for Christmas is always met with the same response...
Like most people I look back on Christmases from my childhood with fondness. I recall the excitement of going to bed on Christmas eve with everything being relatively normal. I recall struggling to get to sleep, longing for the morning when I would awake to presents at the bottom of my bed. Then to go downstairs and see the Christmas tree and decorations for the first time and another pile of presents some of which I hoped would be for me.
After breakfast the whole family would gather together and we would open our presents. The anticipation of seeing a colourfully wrapped present, looking at it and wondering what could possibly be inside. Carefully unwrapping it and suddenly discovering what gift was now mine - it was a wonderful build up and oh so exciting.
But now it seems Christmas gifts are little more than the return from a shopping trip to purchase the items on a shopping list! All the anticipation and excitment seems to have vanished.
So whenever I am asked "what do you want for Christmas?", my answer is simple... "a surprise!"