Christmas at the Chinese Buffet and the Bowling Alley:
Christmas in New Orleans often does not look like the type featured in Hallmark movies. In fact, it is often extremely hot in our part of the state during the holiday season. I love cold weather; my hubby, alas, does not. A warmer Christmas is fine with him; however, this Christmas promises to tip below freezing. I’m thrilled! He’s not!
This Thanksgiving, we went to North Carolina to be with some of our relatives who are transfers from New Orleans. The weather was mild, and we loved the family atmosphere. This Christmas, we also will participate in many of our traditional holiday traditions and see friends and family we love. On December 17, I attended a concert by friends in the suburb of Gretna. The whole area was bright with lights and was gorgeous. On December 18, hubby and I attended the Louisiana Transfer Ceremony. This event celebrates the transfer of the Louisiana territory to the United States. Caroling in Jackson Square followed. Later in the week, we will attend a Celtic Christmas concert by Danny O’Flaherty, a noted Irish musician. We will, of course, finish our Christmas shopping and attend Midnight Mass at St. Joseph, the church where we were married. The caroling in church begins well before midnight, and we love to participate.
Our favorite part of Christmas celebrating is our dinner at a small Chinese buffet. We aren’t tied to any traditional dinner, and this buffet holds a special place in our hearts. We spent our first holiday as a couple there. It was there we talked of the future and the possibility of a life together. It is in this restaurant every Christmas we reaffirm our joy in each other and in each other’s company. No traditional turkey for us; we are quite happy with our non-traditional meal. We then head to the Rock ‘n’ Bowl for a non-traditional Christmas show in a bowling alley/music hall that boasts a gorgeous Nativity, Virgin Mother Statue, Vince Vance head, and images of rock icons on the wall.
We are quite happy with our non-traditional Christmas, and we will follow the tradition of visiting our families and our friends. We will attend a friend’s New Year’s Eve party and host several people for wine and cheese during this festive season. We will celebrate in freedom and in joy. We have the freedom to live as we choose, and I praise our Founding Fathers and those who fought in later wars for our freedom. This is why my characters like Nuala Comeaux, Jude Mooney, and his progeny have fought for freedom—so that we, their descendants, can celebrate our traditions in peace.