Make lists!! Gifts, what to eat, what to pack, what appliences to unplug, which relative to avoid… Do not ask a significant other or the person sitting next to you at the doctor’s waiting room (you came to pick up your allergy/malaria tablets that was on one of your lists) to help you find a pen and blank piece of paper. They will immediately hijack your great idea and start making their own lists – still leaving you pen- and paperless. But that’s another story…
Having worked in a coffeeshop in one of the most popular holiday destinations during the festive season, I would really like it if everybody would put this easy task on their list:
“Be nice to everyone who has to work during the holiday season”
The fuel-attendant with his silly Christmas hat that he’s been forced to wear since October; the cashier who by now has heard “The Little Drummer Boy” about 4 million times already; the waitress who has to endure the same lame jokes inflicted upon her about her unfortunate relevant name, “Mary”. (…”you must be very relieved that it is almost your due date, Mary?”… “Is your last name “Christmas”?…”); The flight attendant who got stuck with the festive season shifts, because he is the only one who doesn’t have family to go to; basically everybody you meet behind a counter or who’s wearing a nametag, uniform, overalls, reflective jacket or an apron.
If you find yourself complaining to them about the lack of parking, being sunburnt, having a headache from sleeping all day, sand in your underpants… any of those little inconveniences that seem HUGE while you are on holiday – take a breath and notice the person that you are complaining to. He/she is WORKING!! You are on holiday.
Perhaps rather tell them about the great things you’ve experienced in their town. Tell them how pretty they look! – Unless it’s a big hairy leathery guy with tattoos and piercings… although, I am sure big hairy leathery men also like to feel pretty! Tell him he looks pretty and RUN, I mean, RELAX a little. Eat a lot! Build a sandcastle – if you’re at the beach. Enjoy every moment! Just be nice, but most importantly: Dont hijack other people’s list-making idea and leave them pen- and paperless!
Big Holiday Hug!