Prompt: Did you or your ancestors travel anywhere for Christmas? How did you travel and who traveled with you? Do you remember any special trips?
We didn’t travel a great distance for Christmas. When I was young, all the family was in the same city. We’d usually do Christmas Eve with my father’s side of the family either at our house or at one of theirs. After all our presents were opened on Christmas morning, we would take a couple of ‘favourite’ toys and get in the car. We’d spend the rest of the day driving around the city visiting my mother’s side of the family. I remember there were often two stops with Christmas dinner being at the second one. (I may, however, be remembering wrong! It was years ago and I was quite young at the time.)
Once we’d made the ‘big move’ we didn’t travel at all at Christmas. It was too expensive for us all to fly ‘home’ so we had very quiet Christmases with just us. One year one of my grandmothers came out for the holiday but I think it was only the once. Someday I would like to take our children to visit my husband’s family overseas, but we think we’ll wait until they’re old enough to understand what’s going on!
Excerpt from Where the Saints Have Trod, Judith St. John, 1974 (Oxford University Press). The book is based on the author’s childhood memories (ca 1914-1924). She was my great-aunt.
“We finished The Prince and Pauper and started the book about old Scrooge. First thing we knew, we had stroked off eighteen days. There were only six more until Christmas, and we had come to the date bearing the picture of the train that was bringing Aunt Rhoda all the way from Montreal for Christmas. We were all standing on the station platform when the locomotive rushed into town with boisterous excitement. There was Aunt Rhoda with a huge, black suitcase. It was good to hug her. She was fat and rather squashy, like the comfortable cushion, Edward, I used to play with when I was little.”