Thursday, December 11, 2008

noche de las velitas

Night of the candles. I won't pretend to know much about this tradition but I think it has something to do with lighting the way for the holy couple to find their way to five star accommodations in a stable. Streets, walkways, and driveways around Cali are lined with lit candles. It's very beautiful. Some people light fireworks. This night, Christmas Eve, Christmas, and New Year's Eve you might also here gun shots saluting perhaps not the holiday so much as the end of a bottle of aguardiente.

At Bolivar, Noche de las Velitas means a field of rows of candles, families gathering to chat and enjoy traditional Colombian foods such as pizza and Coke (ha ha), photos with Santa, and Christmas music. Noche de las Velitas also means budding pyromaniacs (I saw smoke signals this year) and rolling melted candles into giant wax heads. Which you then set on fire.

Some of the religious reverence of the night might be lost.

But here we are at Claire's first Noche de las Velitas. She didn't sleep long. But later, when we went out for pizza with friends after lighting our own candles, Claire was snoozing again. In the between time, she loved looking around. Try to imagine what it must be like, to take in so much at once: music, dancing lights, new faces. And here's what happens when you bring a baby: gaggles of girls. This is our friend Scott surrounded by middle and elementary school girls who had to have a look at our darling daughter. If I could post a soundtrack it'd be a repeat of variations of oohawwshe'ssobeautifulhowmanymonthsoohaww.


Anonymous said...

Claire is darling- what a beautiful baby!!! Hope you have a great Christmas!
Brielle (schlittler) Reicks

Anonymous said...

Claire is soo cute. I do love my little neice!Love MaryGrace