Missing All of You This Christmas

Maybe we have been away for a long time. Christmas is so different without the company of friends and family. It is so much quieter this year without the presence of my wahbiang buddies, Singapore family and that noisy HK indian buddy. So many of them are away on holidays (Joanne in Phuket, Cousin Yei & Echo in Shanghai, Chester in Japan, Leon and family in Xiamen, Harshad and Tracy in Bhutan, Yifu & Family in Hong Kong) with their friends and families. I guess this is a pretty lonely and quiet Christmas season for many. I received more “I miss you” messages than “Merry Christmas”. Just finished my late wee-hour greeting chats with Echo and Aunty Amy, we certainly need to organise a big gathering next year. For them, too, it has been a very quiet Christmas.

On Christmas’ Eve, I tried to connect everyone to gather some noise and “festive moods” on mobile through WeChat. Not ideal but this helps to connect the whole clan together. Thankfully, I managed to gather all my family and a handful of my friends. (I shouldn’t have deleted my Whatsapp but I won’t bow down to intrusion of privacy! So, Chester, Kalinda, Karen and Juliana – please install WeChat!). I asked everyone to send me their Christmas moments (be it a card, photo or even a voice memo!) Thanks to all, I managed to receive lots of amusing voice memos and many beautiful happy photos. It is always a great joy to see Wahbiang’s Annual Christmas Gathering (since 1992!). While the adults are away and mellowing down, our kids are making the gathering bigger and filling the void with their laughters and noise. Like what Felicia said “Someday when the kids are going for their own Christmas parties, will leave us the same old Wahbiang gang.”

It is becoming a tradition in our household. Thanks to Felicia, she put up a new “Christmas Tree-Wall” at my tiny apartment this year. It reminded me of our wonderful Europe trip – a Eiffel Tower Christmas Tree! It blinks every night. Another special mention – I got her to design this year’s OgilvyAction’s DIY 3D Christmas Card (and big thanks to an old friend Timmy for sponsoring the production!). Thanks to all my lovely clients and friends for taking the effort to make the cards and sent me those photos! (I am so glad that my friends received the cards on time – sorry, we have been away for our tour.. we sent them out late!). 

While this is the season to get together with your loved ones and spread laughters, joys and love, it is also the time of the year when we reflect on what we accomplished and learnt for the past year. While we are celebrating this special day, do remember there are so many more unfortunate people out there who need our constant attention and help. Do spend some time and teach our children the origins of this special day. It is more than “gifting”. It is all above giving. That is the best gift we gave as parents. It is a tradition and values we must build in our children. Be thoughtful, be kind, be selfless and be good.

Now, we are looking forward to the return of Aunty Bay and Uncle Harshad. It is no fun celebrating and unwrapping our Christmas gifts without them. For the least, Elkan can wait till their return. After all, there are 12 days of Christmas and we have a brand new world to celebrate! It will be a happier 2013. I can hear wedding bells and birthday songs.

Merry Christmas to all of you. I miss you guys so much.

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