What even is Christmas spirit? I used to think it was a load of rubbish, just a term used to describe the good mood that comes with Christmas. Well, the good mood that most people slip into when the excitement of Christmas hits. (For me, that's on November 30th; for my mum, it's on the actual day.) I didn't think there was an actual thing that you could define as "Christmas Spirit". But today, well, I do!
Last night, my friend called and asked if I could help out her Rotary Club collecting money for a load of local charities. (If you don't know what a Rotary Club does at Christmas then I'll tell you: a group of volunteers go round asking for money, with a man dressed up as Father Christmas, and a float, which is essentially a van with some fake reindeer on top and a load of Christmas lights, blasting out all the Christmas classics.) I said yep, and she came and picked up. I was given a fluorescent jacket, a Christmas hat and a collection bucket, and was told to knock on all the doors on some particular streets and get money off them.
I was convinced no one would give money, because I rarely do, and that I'd be told to get lost. However, in the three hours I was out (in the freezing cold without gloves) I had just a couple of people refuse to pop some coins in my bucket. Everyone else was so generous. Some people had heard the ridiculously loud music coming from the float driving down their roads and were waiting at their front doors, wallets in hand. Sometimes, children would come running out shouting that Father Christmas was here, and he'd go over and talk to them.
And it's going to sound so cheesy, but I had a little epiphany last night, stood in the middle of the road. All the houses had multicoloured lights up, and the Christmas music was blaring from the float, and little children were standing on their driveways waving at Father Christmas, and I could feel the weight of the coins in my bucket. And I thought, wow this is the epitome of Christmas spirit: generosity, happiness, and togetherness. It's beautiful!