As church bells chime in the gentle breeze and playful children squeal in their games, I let my eyes wander far beyond the snow-covered hills and friendly skies. The cool air smells fresh. Chokingly cold, but fresh. As I make my way down the steep, winding path, I soon lose sight of what expansive nature there was and come upon a mysterious little wooden gate, buried deep in a cluster of overgrown blue princess holly. Funny, I’ve never seen it around before. A slight push and the door creaks open. Several more steps forward, and I come across a modest cottage. Inside, it is almost bare, save for a tiny log table upon which it seems that someone’s in the midst of setting up a celebration or party of some sort.
Candles emanating heart warming scents. Plenty of fruits to go all around. Tins and tins of biscuits, cartons and cartons of tea bags. Fascinating tubes of ointments that promise youthful skin.
Out of nowhere, there comes a polite cough and I turn around to see a guinea pig about the size of a five-year-old boy gazing ever so endearingly at me. “I- I- Why this is awkward,” it said. “We’ve never had anyone in here before! Would you like to pick your presents up yourself?”