I cannot bear to listen to Christmas Carols. They evoke in me overwhelming nostalgia for times past.
They conjure up memories of when I was a child and then a young mother singing carols, hearing strains of Christmas music on the radio, Father Christmas's in all varieties and many places, Nativity Plays, decorating the tree, the smell of fir leaves and cones, the gleam of glass baubles, decorations handed down from generation to generation - magical times when life was for living and fun. It was never without the action of sharing the joy with those less blessed, and we were poor, but not as poor as some.
Christmas afternoon the adults slumped with over-indulgence from food, drinks and smoked cigarettes without guilt or shame and the children played. We were a family welded together with celebratory solidarity, good and bad. We felt wonderful.
This was a time when the newly formed World Health Organisation was dedicated to addressing poverty and illnesses in poor Nations. It was before the time of the Charity Industry, or Lobby Groups, or Tobacco Control, or Public Health had become intrusive into everyone's private health. It was before the Religion of Science stated that God was a Delusion, thus classifying most of the world insane.
So it was a time when I knew that good people worldwide were doing good things for those to whom it really mattered - the poor and the sick. It seemed a good world that had come out of a bad time of World War Two. I trusted those who ruled because they were trustworthy and wise. They would make the world safe from war and it would be better in every way. It was a time of hope. And the best feeling of all was, I BELIEVED it with all my heart.
Christmas Carols expose to me the depth of my young naivete and I can't bear them.