There are some things I like waiting for. I love waiting at train stations, as opposed to bus stops, i love waiting for the time to the start of football matches, the hype, the drama. at a stadium, the filling of the crowd, the buzz of excitement, the smell of pies and grass. I love waiting for an idea to arrive, or the space to read and find them. There is something magical about waiting for Christmas day. The wait, the build up, the unknown new newness. The hype of lights, and carols and smell of mulled wine, log fires, home cooking. The wait that brings a conversation, the wait that brings people together, the gatherings for carols, the packed coffee shops.
In the fictional novel Red Dwarf: Better than Life, Dave Lister (the last Human alive) is transported to a fictional world with the aid of the simulation game (Better than Life), which could tap into his own subconscious to give him what ever he wanted. After 3 million years away from Earth, 3 million years away from another Human, the world that Lister is transported to is a world where he and his dreamed of children, and wife enjoy life in the fictional town of Bedford Falls, it was a fictional dream world where the shops had bargains, and the smell of Christmas was all around. Well it would be, in Bedford falls, because Listers subconscious perfect world it would be Christmas eve every day. Christmas eve, because the friendliness, the build up, the crowds, the Candles, smells, and in his world, snow crusted walkways would never be over. The waiting would never end.
Maybe Dave Listers world is too shallow. But something about being away from a world of Humanity would cause most of us to want for a good season of the year to be connected with. Christmas eve, might just be a more pleasant day than Christmas. Loving the waiting, loving the expectation. Loving it so much that not wanting it to end. The hopes and dreams of Christmas.
This afternoon I took the dog, Ruby for a walk, not unusual, and it wasnt that unusual to take her along the beach at Seaton Carew, just outside Hartlepool. Ruby is rubbish at waiting, en route in the car she’s an excitable beast. She is rubbish at waiting for her lead off. But when there’s birds to be chased, can she wait, can she stalk them, delicately paw her way near them only to then take off for a instant 40mph run. As I watched Ruby, and as I watched across the sea I noticed the Wind Turbines, spinning furiously and constantly. They weren’t waiting for the wind, as it hasn’t stopped being windy for months, but they may have been waiting for a break in the wind, waiting for a break.
Waiting for Christmas might be waiting for a break. A break in time, a break in fortune, a break of rest. A break in the norm where the crowds, the song, and others take centre stage. A break to wait.
Dave Lister longed for such a break, a break where his dreams would take him back to earth, back to humanity and back to hope and dream again. His dreams and hopes were shattered because even in his own fictional world it could be jeopardised by a different characters crazed fictional existence.
Our Dreams are not interrupted in the same way.
Yet though Christmas Day could be, and might be something of an anti climax – (ie its alot of hype for 3 months just for a big roast dinner, the queens speech and an eastenders special)
Our hoped for Humanity is fulfilled by the intersecting within it of God incarnate, the God who redeems Christmas eve, who appears at the end of nine months of a Mary pregnancy waiting. The Christmas eve wait, is a christmas eve break. A transcendant break in the God to Man separation. A break that is Hope, and Love and all the best things in the run up to Christmas, and all the greatest of expectations, and heralding of the most glorious of imaginary worlds.
The wait is almost over, the next chapter, the next new place, the next journey and new world is yet to be created.