“Christmas in..(pick any village)”

An update on a skit I jotted in Christmas ’08 amongst heavy, dense traffic – the Year of ‘Sex in the City’

Two young people trudging and tired…..a tanned young man and his sweet and heavily pregnant young wife. Joseph rocks up to hotel after hotel. The village is packed to the rafters, but this baby isn’t going to wait for The Mirage. …Not even a Backpackers; down to the final refusal…Joe waves his plastic currency, “but I have a card, what about my Frequent Camel points? My father saved these for us – and we travelled all this by Virgin Camel Freight.”

The sympathetic hotel manager rubs his smart goatie, “We are full, not a bed left….but I know an abandoned chook shed down the road. It’s not fit for humans but if it’s a roof you need, it is a roof (Mary holds her stomach in discomfort). You will have to shoo the pigeons, or don’t look up. I have heard stray animals also shelter there but isn’t life like a box of chocolates. (wets his finger and feels the air)…its not too cold. You don’t look like you’re glammed up for a big night out anyway”.

….After the birth some shepherds arrived, unusual to leave their sheep. Some local village folk are gathered behind them….oohs and aaahs at the wrinkled baby… They’re not sure what’s happening but something feels good.

By and by a caravan of grand Magi arrive: the dream-sayers and government-makers of old Babylon. With knowing looks they pay homage as if in a grand temple, their superlative gifts at odds with this straw-dust floor. It’s a bit weird that these seasoned sages humble themselves so.

Someone holds up the baby, revealing his crinkled newborn face, “You’re saying this is the Star of David? This is the king prophesied to save us from this Roman dictatorship? Do you know they are still refusing us welfare, there is no maternity leave, and we are excluded from the public baths! My parents pay so much tax, there’s going to be nothing left for me!…(he remembers the topic)… This baby couldn’t raise an elbow in an Irish Bar! This is no king!”

The Magi stroke their long beards, bowing low on their prayer mats 7 times. One declares, “Don’t be fooled, this is remarkable. For this babe the stars rearranged the skies, we’ve been beckoned by one across an entire continent….. (quizzically shakes head)…. His appearance is an everyday baby born to nobodies in a dirty barn with lowly animals (grunts, baa’s) ….and he is Jewish.”

A smartly dressed servant of the Magi’s pipes up, “The journey has taken so long I’ve had to trade camels along the way, check out this one’s shiny nose ring. Our journey has been so vast my pec’s have built up by getting up and down for prayers 5 times daily…on the upside my wife will love my new look” (takes his time flexing and admires his new forearms).

The oldest looking Magi summarizes the situation, “This is a remarkable event, beyond our mystic books and teachings. All our lives we’ve studied the scrolls of ancient wisdom yet without finding prophecy of the star that has beckoned us across an entire continent… We must consult their holy book”.

I trust your Christmas will be infused with meaning and unexpected joy. Merry Christmas everyone!