Advent Calendar: December 25th

All photos courtesy of Hayrie Zyulkyarova

Our last but best part of the Advent Calendar series takes us to Berlin and to the largest of the Christmas trees. It’s the one located at Brandenburg Gate. When it comes to Christmas, there are many words that best describe the holiday. It is that of tradition, but it also means spending time with family and friends. It is that of presents and feasts, but it also means strolling through the town or countryside, looking at Christmas decorations, as you will see in a series of slides taken of Berlin under the holiday lights, courtesy of Hayrie Zyulkyarova, who runs Explore Europe Travel and is a former colleague of mine from my days teaching in Bavaria:

It is that of making and sharing mulled wine around the fire and telling stories, but it also means good times. It is that of hope but also that of love. ❤

It means stories and Christmas Carols, like what you will see below. Yet it means giving thanks to those who have done service to help others in need……

We are thankful for the nurses, doctors and medical personnel who have been on the front lines helping patients and their families, especially those who had Covid-19 this year.

We are thankful for researchers and companies who worked around the clock to develop a Covid-19 vaccine for use for the public. While the US and the UK have started their vaccination runs, the rest of Europe will start theirs on December 27th earliest.

We are thankful for the teachers and professors who worked tirelessly both in the classroom (with mouthmasks and glass panels) and at home (in home office) to help the students adapt to new learning environments, embrace them in digital learning and to learn something, little by little, day by day.

We are thankful for the law enforcement officers for keeping peace and order and ensuring that the Covid-19 regulations are obeyed by the public. A bigger thanks also for countering the deniers of the virus and breaking up demonstrations that were high risk and feature violence and anarchy. Because of you, we have been less exposed to misinformation and the virus itself.

We are thankful for the media- both mainstream and bloggers- for providing some up to date coverage on the virus and how people are coping with it. We brought forth some ideas to share and collaborated on solutions that helps everyone, including the retailers.

On a personal note, a thanks to my readers who have read up on the Files since its launch 10 years ago. You provided me with some ideas to make it better, while enjoyed much of my work, especially with regards to foreign languages and culture. 🙂

We are thankful for the retailers themselves. We never thought a virus could lead to a shutdown on two different occasions and we are sorry that you had to endure this. We’re all in this together and we promise you, when you reopen, we will provide you with some businesses so that you can trim your losses and move forward. If there is one slogan here, it is Shop Local, Help the Locals, make it Local. 🙂

On a personal note, I am thankful for family and friends both here in Germany and Europe as well as in the US. The virus taught us the true meaning of family and friends, valuing them more than anything. My daughter with a great sense of humor inspired me to do this and for her, my thanks. ❤ 🙂 This Advent Calendar is for my wife of 20 years, who knows of my exploits as a blogger but always wondered why I sometimes love writing good stuff on the laptop. This one’s for you. 🙂 ❤

From everyone at the Flensburg Files and the Bridgehunter’s Chronicles, we wish you a very Merry Christmas. Stay safe, stay healthy and remember, it goes up hill from here. Happy trails until we meet again! 🙂 ❤

Merry Christmas!