> Two Months of Holidays

Gifts of time and love are surely the basic ingredients of a truly merry Christmas. —Peg Bracken.
What do we do when it gets cold in Shanghai?  We bake, drink tea and go out for hot pot.  Hot pot is a steaming vat of broth, sometimes divided into two sections with one very spicy and one more mild, that you add ingredients into to cook at your table.  Then you take out the food and dip it into a sauce that you created. 
Did I mention that we play on the internet and I like to use Skype...when it works!  Lately it seems like my connection crashes over and over. 
This holiday season I am getting on a plane and going to my home in the states.  I have many people in my life I am grateful for and will get to see some of them during this vacation.  This week I have only to go to work and prepare mentally for that long flight and the mental cultural shift of life for 2 weeks in the states.  
The twelve days of Christmas from the west is more like the two months of holidays in Shanghai.  It started with Thanksgiving, continues through Christmas and all the way until Chinese New Year in February 2010. 
It's getting colder in Shanghai this week.  Some friends and I will again visit the wonderful Haidi Lao Hot Pot restaurant on Thursday.  I might even visit the hot springs the morning of my flight to get relaxed for that long, dry, cramped experience. 
All my best for a love-filled and generous Season of Light,


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