The Christmas parties and dialogue presentations that are going on downstairs are competing with the Scholars Baroque Ensemble recording of Handel's Messiah that I'm playing in my office. I break out the CD every year around this time to try to get me into some sort of Christmas mood.
Every Christmas things get particularly noisy around here as a party atmosphere sets in. Our school is famous--or notorious--in these parts for a huge Christmas dance party that students hold every year. It's a loud monstrosity that backs up traffic on Taichung Harbor Road as students from all over the area ride their motor scooters to the school's gate and park along the road, covering the sidewalks with scooters. Then there's usually a rock band of some sort and a lot of screaming. I live about 5 or 10 minutes (by car) from the school and some Christmas Eves have heard the yelling and cheering from my house. I've always thought Christmas dance parties were kind of weird, and I've tried to explain my feeling to students in terms like "Would you go to a dance party held on Chinese New Year?" This usually gets responses like, "Oh no. That's a family holiday."
All crankiness aside (and the above is probably just an expression of crankiness that has little to do with the student Christmas party), I'm happy this year because my brother and sister-in-law are coming for Christmas. This will be the first Christmas I've had with my brother in 13 years and the first Christmas ever with my sister-in-law!