English Christmas Village Fairs

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Christmas is upon us, which means it’s time for some traditional Christmas festivities out here in the English countryside. Now, you might think that Christmas in an English village is this quaint experience where local charities and scouts set up stalls on the high street, selling homemade baked treats while carolers sing in the back ground.

Maybe you’re picturing joyful children on carousels, storefronts decked out in fake snow, and couples holding hands while reminiscing over the wonderful Christmas fairs of years past.

But I’m here to tell you that you’re wr—oh, nope, that’s pretty much exactly how it is, carry on!

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We’re obsessed with our local Christmas fair. It is the highlight of our year in all of its village-y charm, and it is the perfect way to finish off November. Now, I’m not sure why the Christmas fair is in November, but, hey, life is busy, I can dig it.

It is rare to find a ‘community’ feeling in England, and I can’t quite explain why, but suffice it to say that the act of going out and talking to your neighbors about anything other than “WHY ARE YOU BEING SO LOUD, I CAN BARELY SLEEP” is a real struggle for some people.

Enter: the Village Christmas Fair, ready to spread its holiday cheer.

There’s plenty to eat, and the scents of frying sausages and freshly baked buns fill the streets.

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After dinner, it’s time for my favorite part of any meal: dessert. I got these adorable cupcakes, which I am pleased to say actually tasted good. It can be difficult to combine aesthetics and taste, sometimes, but this village baker got an A+ from me as I scarfed down Rudolph’s face.

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The shops have gone all out in their Christmas decorations, which is lovely but also slightly worrying when they seem to be swallowed by garland and glistening bows. We spend just enough time in each shop to realize we can’t afford anything.

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And then we talk about how last year, we went in the same exact shop and said the same exact thing. And I’m sure next year we will too. I’m not paying 70 pounds for a throw pillow, you guys.

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There are always carnival rides set up for the children, and the squeals of joy (and fear) pierce the dark sky.

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Speaking of the dark sky, these pictures were taken at about 4:30 in the AFTERNOON in late November, for anyone who wonders why I struggle with English winters. Like, what. The day has barely started. Who turned the lights off? Is this a cruel joke against those of us who really like our Vitamin D? Is it July yet?

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Our favorite part of the day/night is the fairground organ at the end of the road, blasting its happy music as the figurines twirl around. We have a little dance, talk about how much we love Christmas, and then leave because I am from Florida and ain’t nobody got time for standing out in the cold.

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