I am just a little worried how Christmas at the beach will feel. Even though I haven't been a dedicated Christmas consumer, I do carry cold and snow in my earliest memories (be it from real life as a kid or postcards with Rudolph and the invariable sleigh) and my genes; and when the kids were small we did it BIG, two meter tree an' all, branches bending under the weight of the decorations, the inevitable fairy on top, miles of presents all wrapped up lovingly... Of course Christmas changed profoundly with the kids doing their own and Mum moving on again. There was no longer the need to make two little souls happy who so fervently believed in Father Christmas and his infinite generosity. I didn't miss Christmas, really; what I missed were those years when it was magical again, when the little kid inside of me had two friends with whom to celebrate Christmasses(?) in a way I'd not been able to when I was small.
So now, here in Peru, Spring is just happening, and despite of it all being subtropical there are some trees which just begin to green again; and I don't mind at all that I don't have to shiver somewhere all wrapped up, the wind penetrating to your skin and your ears dropping off from the cold. This never happens here.
Here beautiful Jacarandá trees pop up between other exotic varietis along the roads or in the green bit in the middle. I walk past front gardens where plants which I have had in pots and which were quite difficult to grow take over like Triffids. I eat fruit which used to cost me a fortune and weren't even ripe, I eat fruit with otherworldy names which I didn't know existed, I have help in the house allowing me to do what I do best, and from my windows I have those breathtaking views of the Pacific... It's all good news. But I do wonder about Christmas.
Even here, in all the shops the new Christmas spirit is everywhere: plastic, paper, shiny, red, green, silver and gold, rubbing it in: you are not a complete person without seasonal trimmings. TV and Radio hammer it home - why should that surprise me? Everythone jumps on the bandwagon, and it's ok - perhaps it's just me who feels a little uneasy - I naively thought that that was one aspect of the "rich" world I could escape. But the local handicraft have a window of opportunity, and what's available in that line is often breathtaking!
Summer and Winter equinoxes were important to all the ancient peoples and the Southern half of our earth was no exception. I'll have to find out more about the pre-Inca cultures here. There is so much to learn, and I've only just skimmed the surface. When I know more I'll post it here.
There is much to tell and it'll be told in bits and pieces as I have time. Most important last words: the food is spectacular and here is one last picture to say goodbye for today: