It’s almost Christmas, but it doesn’t look or feel much like Christmas here (not a Massachusett’s one anyways). The weather is getting warming and green things are turning brown.
Usually I like to bake a lot during the holidays. I make cookies, pies, and gingerbread houses. I also love trimming the tree and listening to christmas music. My parents have sent me advent calenders (one for me and one for the Hugo) so I am keeping that tradition alive. Jeff and I made a “tree” out of brown butcher paper and decorated it with stuff we could find or make, including the lids from our tin cans. The red soccer socks I brough are standing in for stockings and I did manage to make some cookies. I’ve made gingersnaps and sugar cookies. I guess it’s not too hard to bake with a dutch oven. Without television, I’ve been watching the holiday movies in my mind, replaying my favorite scenes from The Santa Clause, White Christmas, and of course an Avonlea Christmas.
Christmas is celebrated in Benin as a large number of Beninese are christian. A lot of my students have asked me for gifts. At the market in Houegbo, I saw plastic santa clause face masks for sale and inflatable santa clauses. You can also buy glittery garland. The landlady who owns our appartment, has a fake christmas tree in her living room… of course she keeps it up year round because she thinks it is beautiful.
Jeff and I are staying in Houegbo for the holidays, so maybe I will have more to write about it then. Right now, I am enjoying the holiday break from work and taking advantage of time in Cotonou to see friends and eat well.
I miss you all!!! Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!