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Yuletide in the French Quarter
In New Orleans the traditional 12 days of Christmas, the time between the 24th of December and the Feast of the Epiphany, the day marking the arrival of the Three Kings, is filled with parties and events. Here there is not a "day after Christmas" when carols are banished and dried up, discarded fir trees forest the sidewalks.
After Christmas day, New Orleans continues the celebration of Yuletide, a season that stems from the agrarian tradition of mid-winter celebrations when the growing season was over, harvest complete and travel still possible on frozen roads.
For farmers, planters, and others folks whose livelihoods came directly from the land, midwinter was a time for parties, balls and weddings.
Today, I enjoy being able to extend the pleasures of Christmas in just the same way. In my life, there is so much build up to Christmas day with getting houses ready for parties, navigating shoppers in the city, and all the other end of the year activity that there is almost no time to enjoy a single day of celebration. Christmas Day is often anti-climactic. Therefore, I particularly enjoy the 12 days of Christmas in New Orleans, as they are removed from the immediate pressure of preparation and focused on the joys of the holiday itself.
The historic houses of the French Quarter mark Yuletide with a Creole Christmas on the 29th when five of the cities great houses are decorated and opened for tours.
I hope these pictures of the Hermann-Grima House will entice you to protract your Christmas Celebrations and perhaps plan to join us in New Orleans for Yuletide next year.