Monday, December 26, 2016

Christmas 2016 in Panajachel

Merry Christmas and Feliz Navidad to everyone!
I've had a wonderful few days of holiday fun. Here's some pics! 😊

Christmassy toes! And nice sandals tan lines. :)
Around here, poinsettias grow wild... and huge!
I tracked down my friend, Juan, and bought two new hummingbirds for my collection.
In Christmas colours, even.  :)
Juan gave me a "deal" (sarcasm quotes) and threw in a snowman!
He's looking a little melty. Must be the heat. :)
Me with the crazy awesome cacti that grow outside Casa Cakchiquel.
I also dyed my hair purple-ish for the holidays. Can you tell? Turns out more red but that's okay by me.
Christmas Eve is a big deal in Guatemala. They call it Nochebuena -- the good night. Bert and I went over to NJP's for pizza and imbibing, then bar hopped around town with a few expat friends. We made it back home in time to watch the spectacular midnight fireworks from my roof. 
NJP bought fireworks. They were incredibly loud!
A close up of the small LOUD firecrackers. The Original Rambo. Ha ha!
Maybe I'm strange but I noticed something different about this balloon right away. It's printed upside-down!
But that's because it's meant to hang down like this, not up as if it was filled with helium. Smart!
For some reason, I had a good giggle over the precision in the amount of pop in this bottle. Two zeros!
Christmas tamale! The family that Bert lives with gave him some. How sweet.
Inside the tamale. It's with a nice sauce, two red pepper strips, some raisins, and this one had a chicken bone and a pork bone in it. (For flavor.) It's actually kinda tasty. Everyone makes theirs a bit differently, and perhaps a bit meatier if you're wealthy.
NJP made his amazing pizza for us! Soooooo good.
Downtown Panajachel was pretty dead but we found a few expat friends, and some new friends, in La Cueva, a bar that's at the back of the El Dorado Plaza.
Bert and NJP playing a round of pool.
Christmas Karaoke!
Ah, my favourite! Gringas at 10pm. Nothing beats 'em.
I didn't take any video of the fireworks this year. Sorry! They were magical, as always. Even the super poor folks next door, who don't even have indoor plumbing, had a few small rockets to shoot off. It truly is the best fireworks display I've ever seen in my life.

Bert's stocking that I stuffed with presents and junk food. :D
So Christmas Day morning arrived too early... oh, wait. I slept in til 10am. HA! Dragged my butt out of bed, chugged some coffee, then Skyped with my little sister and her family. They showed me the snow outside the window! I miss snow!

I opened my prezzies and waited for Bert to come over, but it turned out he was sick. So I went off to do my new Christmas tradition -- swimming!
I've noticed the Guatemalan ladies lately have a new obsession with fancy sun hats.
Jucanya Panajachel Lake Atitlan Guatemala beach
The beach at Jucanya.
Lake Atitlan Guatemala volcanoes Panajachel Jucanya
Not a bad place to spend Christmas, right?
 Here is a short 30-second video of me in the water. Yup, my camera is waterproof! It was so incredibly lovely to float. I need to do it more often. It's awkward though. I get stared at A LOT. Even by adults! But I was the only white person on the beach so I did stick out a bit! 😄

After swimming, I strolled home and Bert showed up feeling a bit better and opened his presents. Then it was more relaxing, eating junk food, and Skyping with family. What a perfect day!

I'll be uploading more videos to my YouTube Channel for your watching pleasure, including a 10-minute video of me walking thru the back alleys of Jucanya to the beach. You can also go there to see the fireworks video I took last year at Xmas. Spectacular!

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday full of joy and awesomeness. 😁

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