Living in Phnom Penh: Celebrating Christmas in PP
This is our 4th Christmas celebrated here in Phnom Penh. And I kinda like the relaxing, quiet pace we have adapted when it comes to celebrating the holidays. Of course, Christmas in the Philippines (home for me!) would always be close to my heart and I do miss it. But there’s much I like about celebrating here. After all, Chinks and Hi-ace are with me. Also my sister is with us. Now if, only my mom and brother could fly over here for Christmas next year, then that would make me feel like I’ve won the lottery a hundred times over.
Here, Christmas is almost a non-event. It’s not a holiday, although I know some Khmers, particularly business establishments have started celebrating Christmas mainly because of the presence of a lot of expats here and you know the ‘commercial’ side of Christmas is too great to pass up. But its nice to see something a little more festive in malls etc. And its also not that hard to buy pressies and decors now compared to the past years. But its still quiet compared to other places, which I’ve learned to like because now I appreciate what Christmas is all about. We also now have simpler celebrations and I’m not in a frenzy. When we were living in Manila, I would always just about go crazy during the holidays. The traffic jams, packed and crowded malls, parties here and there. Well, after the holidays there I would feel like I’m in dire need of being checked in a shopping overdose rehab! Like a hurricane just passed by..
Now, our Christmas would just be me cooking a bit, saying prayers, mass, exchanging gifts, visiting close friends and just spending time with my daughter and husband. I love it this way now. And the morning after Christmas, I still have some energy. Lol. One thing I do miss – simbang gabi. And of course, puto bumbong. Maybe we’ll have our Christmas next year in Philippines.. Hopefully our schedules would permit this, if not maybe my mom could join us?
Also, the weather here is really fab. Cool and dry. Sun still comes up but I find the heat very mild and tolerable so I’m having fun time jogging in the parks. I wish this temp would last a bit longer. Anyway, since its cold and were weird we decided to treat ourselves to some ice cream cake. Hahaha. Yes, we love eating ice cream when its cold. My daughter said its to check if its possible to have ‘brain freeze’. In any case, this one from Swensens was really nutty good. Comfort food. 🙂