Monday, December 27, 2010

Lost in Translation 2

Except for the absence of snow, there have been thankfully few reminders that I’ll be “missing” Christmas in Canada with my parents, brothers, nieces and nephews. Especially in Istanbul Christmas trees, Santas, reindeer and carols are everywhere; I even saw panettone for sale at the supermarket.

Except it’s all for New Year’s. It seems the Turkish have appropriated several Christmas traditions for celebrating New Year’s Eve, where children receive gifts and sit around a decorated “New Year’s tree.”

And in that context, I’d like you to consider three dissatisfyingly strange conversations I had with a dinner guest last night.

Puzzling Conversation #1:

Dinner Guest: Seeing as you have a New Year’s tree all set up and decorated, I assume you’re staying in town for New Year’s Eve?

Me: Actually, that’s our Christams tree. We celebrated Christmas yesterday. We’re going to Adana for New Year’s.

Dinner Guest: Huh?!

Puzzling Conversation #2:

Dinner Guest: Aren’t Christmas and New Year’s on the same day?

Me: No, Christmas is on December 25th.

Dinner Guest: Isn’t Christmas when Jesus was born?

Me: Yes.

Dinner Guest: ??!!

Puzzling Conversation #3:

Dinner Guest: Why are Christmas and New Year’s so close together, like a week apart?

Me: Huh??!!


  1. Merry Christmas, Happy Birthday to "Baby" and Happy New Year!
    From your friends in Richmond Hill :)

  2. Oh well ... those somewhat ignorant guests you had for dinner need to read more books!

  3. Puzzling Conversation #4:

    Dinner Guest: Then who was born on New Year's Day?

    Fly on the Wall: Why...Santa Claus, of course!

    Dinner Guest: You mean to say, he's REAL?

    Fly on the Wall: Huh??!!