The battle ensued for the last Wii game in town. Angry, stressed parents and virtual golf addicts were jostling like NHL enforcers in a popular downtown store in Montreal, beating the heck out of each other in the name of peace, cheery spirits and goodwill to all mankind.

The bout lasted a few minutes, as some smart shoppers high-tailed it to another store just across the street, hearing that just maybe a demo model may be up for sale. I quickly followed.

Meanwhile, the skies emptied themselves of all precipitation for days on end and the once crystalline snow turned slush slowed down the rapid pace of the city to a mere angry crawl, with taxi cabs furious with God’s work and hating the weather forecaster as much as President Bush’s war on their own lands across the seas and deserts. I just want to get to a mall, any mall, I mutter.

Days later, back in the frozen Arctic, the endless succession of office parties had me stuffed like the proverbial Christmas turkey. Patrons of many drinking holes congregated with a fervor not unlike that of the Roman days, just before the Christians took over. We slowly recovered for days, suffering revelations on just exactly what happened back there, with existential questions such as, am I still employed, did I tick off the boss again, dancing through some minds. This scenario is to be repeated for the remainder of the 12 days of Christmas, until all are sated with party going.

Nature, in the meantime, has kept her promise for a White Christmas. Skidoos have become popular again, the snowboard rules the slopes and everyone who doesn’t hate winter is taking advantage of the white stuff everywhere. It looks like everyone will get their Christmas look this year, even California.

Meanwhile, back home, the calls of the cold dogs at the full moon have faded away from the fear that is keeping people off the mean streets of Great Whale lest a rowdy gang of polar bears come to snatch one away. This year, a record six big bears have snooped in and around town, much to the glee of a skillful Inuk hunter with his big bore gun, felling one still swimming in the rapid waters of the Great Whale River. Quite the eye, this guy.

Once the holidays set in, it’ll be more time for going out on the land and enjoy the abundance of ptarmigans. It seems that everything is white this year, including the local wildlife.

The New Year, hopefully, will be full of many, many cooolldd ddays (please pronounce with chattering teeth), so that the imbalance of global warming will cease. We long for the festive seasons of our memories: of days when cold was still cool; when everyone wore the same type of parka; when skidoos roared around until it was too damn cold to zoom around at high speed with someone you want to impress and better to cuddle up with a hot cocoa and holiday movie instead.

Merry Christmas and Good Cheer to everyone!