Aaaahhh, it’s Christmas and in New Zealand that means a summer holiday, time to relax, preferably by a beach or pool. For some the holiday involves a big family gathering. We are a huge family and we love our occasional maxi-reunions, but not at Christmas. Then we drift off in different directions for smaller gatherings, which are seldom fraught. And anyone introverted or restless can slide away now and then for a breather.
But for some families, such events are a problem every year. So for all who struggle to cope with the crowd and the ritual, here’s a poem, shared with the permission of poet Adrienne Jansen.
The big family get-together
It’s like swimming in the ocean
when the Titanic has gone down —
trying to keep your head above water,
trying to grab the food drifting past,
trying to think of things to say
when talking about the weather
is not appropriate.
~ (c) Adrienne Jansen
Photo by Keri-Lee Beasley, CC BY-NC 2.0. Athenree Estuary near Waihi, New Zealand