In the Land Down Under, Christmas falls in the midst of summer, there is no snow covering the Christmas tree, nobody using the chimney, no snowman, but nothing can beat the spirit of it.
The start of festive season was started back in the third week of November, exactly 1 month before Christmas. Someone once told me that, "Chinese can be crazy about firecrackers but Australian are crazy about fireworks."
And really, there was fireworks at Darling Harbour to initiate the start of festive season. I was just lazing around when I heard the 'boom boom boom' sound. I was not there to watch the fireworks, but Darling Harbour gave me time to make up, from 13 December to 24 December 2016, the fireworks come daily at 9 p.m. for free!
|I was walking home when I saw this|
|No shape ::(|
|Decided to take a boomerang of it|
Other than the fireworks, Christmas here is celebrated by loads of shopping! There is no excessive decoration but there is indeed excessive sales and discounts everywhere. Leading up to Christmas, there is Black Friday that falls on the last Friday of November followed by Super Sale Weekend that falls on the first weekend of December.
After that, the stores just continue their Christmas sale until Christmas eve. Boxing Day on 26 December will close off the spending season with a smile on people's face but a lot of tears on the wallet.
Who can resist big 'SALE' signs at all shops? Even the groceries.
|Santa's House in QVB|
|Lighting in Pitt Street Mall|
|Small Christmas tree at George Street|
|You can personalise the nutella jar with name for gift|
The decorations are sure losing up to what I usually had in Singapore, but the atmosphere here is different! People here really look forward to Christmas as we Chinese look forward to Chinese new year.
Another great thing about summer Christmas is to have Christmas market popping up everywhere. I enjoyed walking around Christmas markets and find homemade stuffs being sold. I just love pop-up markets generally!
|One of the market in Pyrmont Bay Park|
|Another one in Hyde Park Barrack Museum|
|Even though it rains, people still come in a very high spirits to shop!|
One more thing relating to Christmas that I reckon here is that people will use Christmas as the ultimate excuse to feast! I started to get invited to various Christmas parties and gatherings two weeks prior to Christmas.
|Turned to Christmas Celebration|
|Ground Engineering team's Yum Cha|
|AECOM Sydney's Christmas Party|
|Mr. White Rabbit won the best costume!|
The office Christmas party was held today, just before the office shuts down for more than two weeks for Christmas break. This is another thing very different with Singapore. Although this kind of office shutdown consumes the leaves as well, having everybody taking the break together with you feels kind of thrilling. It feels like school break where you need not bother about getting a call from office because the office is empty! Oh my.
I am really really grateful of what 2016 has brought me. I have a new opportunity in Sydney, I get advancement in my career, I passed another professional engineering exam in Singapore, I get more settled in my relationship, I crossed Europe from my bucket list.
I am so blessed!
Thanks, Universe! I hope the blessing will follow for 2017 and the years ahead.
|Cheers to 2016. Cheers to life.|
Love is in the air,