Of all the festivities we used to do and don't anymore I miss caroling the most. There's something wondrous and silly about wandering around a neighborhood in a group, singing. There are still groups singing holiday songs but at stationary events that you go to see, they don't come to your door. Sure, it's more efficient that way but it's much less spontaneous and joyful.
Our carolers were mostly choir members. People used to singing together with well-rehearsed parts. Carolling was our play time. Strangers would join in. Between stops songs would be suggested. There wasn't a set list; it was gloriously impromptu. And as the night went on, the adults would get louder and merrier after sipping from flasks they had in their coat pockets. It was about fun, and nothing but fun.
And the people we sang to loved it. Never once did anyone close a door. People would hang out of their apartment house windows, some throwing coats on and joining us. I don't recall anyone offering treats or money, but that's not why we were out there anyway. No wassail or figgy pudding could've made it any happier or better.
Every year I hope for carolers. That's what the seasonal celebrations are about; hope.
Love and joy come to you, and to you your wassail too, and gods bless you and send you a happy new year.
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