For the last two years around this time, I would be waking up with a belly full of home-made organic soup- and NOT the Hoity Toity over-rated grocery organic, I’m talking about the, “Hey nino, go catch that pollo and grab the machete!” organic, type of organic! It was probably about 80 degrees with a high of NO chance of snow. I was sitting on the floor boards of a stilted wood hut, eating hojaldras (those are panamanian syle donuts=fried bread) with sugary hot coffee…emphasis on the sugary. Kids were making kites out of plastic bags. It was simple, it was good.
This year, I’m waking up, belly full of not much (because in my family, up until 12:00am December 25th, Christmas.time.is.a.mess.) In the best way of course. There’s n0t much time to cook and enjoy holiday radio, take rides to look at the beautiful lights, or watch the classics. Instead it is filled with running around practicing, putting together music, and making sure the coffee and donuts are ready to take to the church to ensure happy musicians for the late night services. Once the last note is sung, and the last candle is blown out at 12:00am, we all hug each other and wish Merry Christmas’s, and hop in our cars for home. Then in the morning, we wake up, pour our coffee, which consists of about probably 1/16th the sugar, and open what we “could not live without.” It is not as simple, but it is still so good.
In Panama, Christmas is good; at Home, Christmas is good. Neither one is better or more “Holy.” They are different but beautiful in each’s own way.
Whether in Panama watching children tackle chickens for a delicious meal, or at Home, eating milk with cereal and trying to guess what’s in the awkwardly shaped package under the tree, I am humbled, I am grateful.
Merry Christmas 2012!