At first it seemed normal to Michelle Gompertz to be sitting in an Indian restaurant listing to Kenny G recordings of pop Christmas carols.
Then she grew disoriented. This Indian restaurant was in New Deli. She was surrounded by Hindu culture, but nobody thought twice about listening to the same holiday saxophone Muzak that would be playing in American shopping malls.
"I knew that Christmas was everywhere. But it really hit me," said Gompertz, the daughter of a United Church of Christ pastor in Indiana. "I remember thinking, 'Where are we? What season is this, anyway?' "
She remembered that scene after she married a Jewish New Yorker and started planning holiday festivities in the San Francisco Bay area. It seemed like all of their close friends shared a common bond -- one spouse was Christian and the other Jewish.
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