Monday, December 13, 2010

Snow Dreams, Dusty Feet: Reflections for Advent

Provost Mark Sargent offers a personal and stirring reflection on the Christmas season. Read his essay in its entirety on Gordon’s new Faculty Central site.

“Growing up in southern California, I never dreamt of a white Christmas. The best we could hope for was fog. Every few years an early morning cloud layer would seep inland from the coast on Christmas, bringing a small dose of Dickens into suburban Los Angeles. As children we were even happy for the rain, especially when it flooded the street gutters and allowed us to race the small homemade boats that we occasionally got as gifts.

Only a fraction—usually about 8 percent—of the world’s people will see the snow fall on Christmas. More often the holiday is celebrated under balmy skies. Lights are strung over banyan trees in Thailand and along palm-bordered marinas in Singapore. Papai Noel—or Father Christmas—wears silk to survive the Brazilian sun. For many African families living on the Indian Sea, a white Christmas is a barbecue on the bleached sands of Diani or the Seychelles . . . ” (read more)

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