After all the hard core political mumbo jumbo about elections and war, it is time for some kinder, gentler political posts. And what could be more wonderful than Christmas in London? It is said in song and movies that the place to be from Thanksgiving to Christmas is New York City, which comes alive during the holidays. London gives 'ole New York a run for the money. The atmosphere is festive, the crowds enormous, and the decorations sparkling. One can easily imagine the arcades, such as Piccadilly Arcade, being garlanded and lit down the ceiling. Scale this up, and image whole streets dressed up like this little arcade. Regent Street in particular was arched by blue and red lights all the way from Oxford Street to Piccadilly Circus.
The concept of seasonal window displays was started at Selfridges. We visited there first. We also went on to Harrod's and Fortnum & Mason, but Selfridges won hands down. Particularly nice was the seasonal music provided by the venerable Salvation Army Band.
And this leads into the soft political message of the season. Political correctness is denuding Christmas of its festive spirit, by removing its spiritual core. Without the seasonal hymns, the Salvation Army becomes just another peddler one must block and tackle through to shop in the crowds. A lot has been written on this topic, and no more will be added today, except to say it was a refreshing change to still experience what in the US is fast becoming lost: a Christmas with Happy Christmas not Happy Holidays, a season which respects the traditions and does not replace them with a Disneyfied amalgam of marketing iconography stripped of any intrinsic meaning or values other than be happy, buy more!