We decided to attend the Christmas tree lighting with Santa visit at the Danat Hotel instead of the Hilton. This turned out to be a good choice for many reasons. The tree lighting took place outside, surrounded by palm trees wrapped in lights. Santa came in riding a camel, and children queued up as well as they ever do to get the requisite annual Santa photo. The staff gaily lip synched to favorite holiday songs. The Hilton was apparently quite different - with Santa hanging from the ceiling, getting kidnapped by men with guns, and so much more.... Everyone attending commented on how bizarre it was.
Last week we went out to dinner at the Rotana with our friend Rich, and were able to admire their huge Christmas tree in the lobby and their bakery shop that was covered in real gingerbread and icing - to make a life-size gingerbread house. Belle took a small sample because she didn't quite trust me... Now, we just need to bake some cookies (maybe we'll start today), sing some carols (I think Thursday night at the Rugby Club), and prepare for the big night. Belle's stocking is hung, our tree is decorated with presents from our family in the US resting underneath, and decorations (and Santa hats) from our friends in NH.