Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Smell of Pine in the Air......

The smell of pine is in the air as the cider bubbles on the stove.  Apples and cinnamon permeate the nostrils while Christmas carols ring in the air.  As the last of the ornaments are hung on the tree the snow begins to lightly dust the ground.  As I return from my imaginary journey back to the land of palm trees and pineapples I suddenly realize it's time to decorate for Christmas here in Panama.


Christmas in Panama

Actually there's no smell of pine in our house since we brought with us from Texas an artificial Christmas tree.  When I lived in New Hampshire with my ex-husband we had live trees for many years.  Despite the cleaning I'd do after the tree was gone, I'd find pine needles for the rest of the year in the most unusual places.  So now I'm a confirmed believer in fake, plastic trees that last from year to year, leaving the real ones uncut in the woods.  And in case you're losing sleep at night wondering do they sell live Christmas trees in Panama?  Yes they do!  Cost is about $21.00 up to $32.00 I believe.  A lot of money for a culture of people that make about $350 a month.  But the live trees are probably here more for the expats to spend their money on. 


Have to add some local flavor to the tree!

With the holidays fast approaching we realize that this will be our first one far away from friends and family.  Might as well get into the holiday season to ward off any impending sad thoughts of missing those back in the working world.  In fact I've decided to host a holiday party for some of our new expat friends that we've made here in Panama. 

The tree is trimmed and the house is decorated with sparkling holiday trinkets but there's something missing.  Tomorrow we will head out to find some new treasures to add to our collection of old things.  Time to find some Panama holiday ornaments to nestle in among the old gringo one's. 

Today for me started out with a ride on my spin bike at home while Clyde ran out to get some wood for another project.  Earlier today I opened my closet and showed him my messy shoe collection and asked for his help.  So like the good husband that he is, he built me some shelves to organize my closet.
Of course this meant pulling out all the shoes and other stuff on the bottom of my closet for him to fit the shelves in.  One closet lead to another and yet another and before I knew it, I had stuff everywhere.  But I managed to organize my closet and two huge closets in the gym room of the house.  That's when I noticed the boxes of Christmas stuff and decided to make even more mess.

You can't see it in this picture
But the rack is 6' and double this size
 

Still wearing my padded cycling shorts and a sports bra from my workout earlier, it was 4 pm by the time I finally hit the shower.  Afterwards I vacuumed and cleaned up the white tile floors which Clyde cooked up some fish (corvina) and veggies for dinner. 

Last night the same little boys stopped by that sold Clyde the bread pizza's the night before. They explained something about a meeting tonight at 7pm but we have no idea what it's about.  Since they were selling pizza's for futbol (soccer) we assume that the meeting is about soccer.  We were being nice giving them a few bucks for pizzas but have no interest in sponsoring or getting involved with a kids soccer team in any way. Clyde thought about this all day wondering if we should go to this meeting.  He even told me at one point that we should go.  I asked "why".....do you want to support their team?  Buy uniforms or coach?  Of course not so why should we go to a soccer meeting at someones house?  Besides IF the meeting was for any other reason like they just wanted to meet us and invite us over for a get together, don't you think that the Mom's would have asked?  So we are staying home and hoping that we did the right thing.

Once again it's the language barrier that has us perplexed.  If we fully understood Spanish we would have understood what this meeting was all about.  But for now we keep moving forward a little at a time, trying to understand a little more of this foreign world in which we live.  We seem to be the first in the neighborhood to put up a Christmas tree so let's hope that there's not some Panamanian rules about how and when to display Christmas decorations.  I'm sure our neighbors will notice that the crazy gringo house has a tree lit as they wonder who lives inside.  This year we'll have our first real "Feliz Navidad" instead of Christmas as Santa trots his horse down the path... along the gringo trail.

1 comment:

  1. Seems it will be hard getting in and out of the door with the Christmas tree there!!! LOL

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