Even though this is my second Christmas abroad, it’s really my first expat Christmas. Remember last year how I ran away on a megayacht on Christmas Eve? And then didn’t come back for two months? I don’t know if that really counted as an expat Christmas last year since I was on a fancy boat drinking endless champagne (woe is me).
This year I am at my house, by myself, working as usual. When your job caters to people on vacation, you don’t get holidays off.
|christmas at my ‘office’.
I’m not going to lie, it’s totally weird seeing everyone’s pictures and Facebook posts about snow, office Christmas parties, family dinners, wrapped presents and reuniting with old friends while home for the holidays. While they do celebrate Christmas on Roatan, it’s not the big deal it is in North America and since most of the economy relies on tourism, they are used to working on Christmas (sacrilege in Canada unless you work at 7-11 or a hospital) . And also, um, it’s like a billion degrees and I’m at the beach sweating my tits off.
So when my friends and family back home ask what I’m doing for Christmas, I usually just say, “oh, working”. In reality, I’m updating my Facebook feed and Instagram every five minutes and pining over Christmas cookies, eggnog (it’s called ‘rompopo’ here which is relatively festive but it’s not for Christmas and available year-round so the charm is lost a bit, I think), watching How The Grinch Stole Christmas, snuggling with dogs, playing in the snow and waking up on Christmas morning and taking part in whatever weird traditions your famjam likes to do. I’d like to be at my parents’ house in Canada with everyone for about 3 days right now. But then I’d like to get the hell out of the -47C cold and snow! Ain’t nobody got time for that.
Since I can’t do that, here’s the real answer to what I’m doing for Christmas here: I’m watching Home Alone on Netflix and not caring how much 3G data it’s eating, I’m going to try Skyping my family about 84 times until they answer, I’m drinking coconut rum, I’m sitting on my deck looking at the ocean in perfect 28C weather, I’m still all salty from snorkeling in the sea all day with happy families on holiday, I’m going to make the one steak I’ve had all year (because I can only afford it once a year), and then I’m going to sleep in tomorrow…until 9am when I have to go to work and teach people how to scuba dive, because that’s what they wanted for Christmas and it’s my job. Welcome to an expat Christmas.
|‘home alone’ with spanish subtitles in the jungle. the ocean is overexposed, but i promise it’s back there in the white space.
Merry Christmas, internet people. Hope you all get what you wanted from Santa. I asked him for a Kindle Fire HDX and a ticket to this Roatan dream home giveaway, because what I really want for Christmas is to never drive to work in -47C ever again in my whole fucking life.