Another Christmas

Merry Christmas. Happy Holidays. Whatever your preference, I wish everyone (anyone?) who reads this a joyous winter season and a better 2018 than the year soon to end.

Last night, for the second year in a row, we spent the evening sharing soups prepared by members and friends of the Unitarian Universalist Village Church. Janine’s contribution was a North African inspired red lentil soup. Judging from the fact that all of it was eaten and several people commented positively about it and asked for the recipe, I think it was a hit.

We enjoyed the evening, but something about the experience left me feeling disconnected to the group. I felt almost as if I were observing the event instead of participating in it. I don’t know whether Janine felt that way, but from my perspective, we were both observers to a far greater degree than were participants. There was much conversation, much happy laughter, lots of person-to-person engagement all around us, but we were rarely part of it. Maybe it’s because we’re both introverts and tend not to initiate conversations. Maybe it’s something else that I can’t quite put my finger on. Last night, I felt very much like an outsider, even though I was in the midst of it, taking pictures that I might use in the church newsletter and engaging in the occasional quick conversation with others. “Conversation” is not the right word; my engagements were more like quick, superficial chats.

The pain in my left knee that began yesterday morning have colored reaction to last night’s experience. By lunch time, it hurt to walk and to bend my knee, which was visibly swollen. When it came time to drive to the church, I could not bend it enough to get in the driver’s seat, so Janine drove. I limped around getting soup and wincing at the pain. When we got home, I took a couple of pills for pain, which, this morning, seem to have helped a bit. My knees (both of them) increasingly complain about bending of late. I suspect the pain is simply the price of ageing and carrying too much upper body excess baggage.

Maybe today, Christmas Day, I’m just feeling a bit removed from society in general. I suspect I’ll get over this malaise. I always do.

About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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