Last night, the meaning of Christmas was there in all its glory. The hills bathed in the golden light of early evening, our little family drove through the valley to sing carols at the local hall.
Fifty or so members of our extended neighbourhood had brought plates of home-made delicacies to share and some enthusiastic young women had decorated the tiny wooden hall with tinsel, fairy lights and balloons. One of the district’s matriarchs led the singing, complete with readings and a nativity scene reconstructed by the children.
I haven’t been a member of a congregation since I left school but this felt like a homecoming, not to my faith but to my community.
As the adults renewed friendships over cupcakes, Zoe ran around the oval with a dozen other kids ranging in age from three to 13 and when the treats were handed out at 9.30, she was running purely on adrenaline. Walking back through the chilly air to the car, we wondered at the stars, admiring Venus and Mars among the glittering planets.
How lucky are we?