Here’s another take on the term “white Christmas.” It’s the idea that, as pedestrians, we ought to wear colours that reflect light in the long – and often wet – nighttime hours of Victoria’s winter.
Drivers’ vision is limited by rain and the blinding and echoing lights of oncoming traffic. Our best defence against being hit by a car is to change out of our fashionable dark attire, which renders us nearly invisible at night, into clothing whose colour can alert drivers to our presence: white, yellow or something with reflectors, for example. Carrying a flashlight helps, but it’s just a pinprick of protection that’s sometimes lost in the circus of glaring headlights, over-bright street lamps, blinking store signs, and flashing Christmas decor.
We can stay safe while we’re walking the streets, shopping or enjoying the festive holiday displays, by realizing that just because we can see cars, it doesn’t follow that drivers can see us. Having a white Christmas doesn’t have to mean being carried off by angels. We just need to wear bright clothing that doesn’t camouflage us against the dark.