Sunday, Dec 25, 2016
Feliz Navidad! It is our first Christmas in Ecuador and I get to wake up this beautiful Christmas morning on the Ecuadorian Pacific. Life is definitely good.
Heidi and I went into Chase and Easton’s room and woke them up with a “Merry Christmas”. We gave them their present which was so conveniently procured the night before. Well, maybe we added a little something extra too. 😉 We are really blessed to be able to have this time together as a family in Ecuador.
Roy is making a fancy egg thing cooked in muffin tins for breakfast. Hamed, who works here at The Cottages”, is grilling some sausage on the BBQ by the pool. Donna has made a banana bread with ginger spiced frosting. I’ve brewed fresh coffee and added some “Christmas” egg nog. It is a great breakfast for all of us on Christmas morning.
Auro and Miguel showed up after breakfast to head to the beach with us at Don and Donna’s farm. The sun is hot and the little stretch of beach outside our enclave at The Cottages is already filling up with locals ready for a day at the ocean. We loaded up the pickup with our food and coolers and headed to our own beach party.
I got the coals going good and hot to cook our chickens. Heidi had seasoned them just right and wrapped them tight in a lot of tin foil. This was a good thing because the coals were so hot I wondered if the chickens would come out like the turkey on Christmas Vacation? Yikes!
We grilled swordfish, mushrooms stuffed with fresh crab, and a variety of vegetables on the BBQ. Everyone brought a dish to share. Salads, perogies, and desserts abounded. My favorites were the desserts. Pineapple cobblers, peach and apple pies, all fresh and so good! Everything turned out great, including the chicken…moist and delicious.
Many people from the old “Bahia crew” began showing up for Christmas on the beach. Some of our friends here today I haven’t seen since the earthquake. Looking around at everyone, it reminds me of our parties we used to have at Dos Hemisferios. Just laid back and relaxed, with easy conversation as we watch the ocean.
Heidi and I were able to take a long walk up the beach. The sun hangs low in the sky to my left as we scan the shoreline ahead of us. The tide is out, the beach is completely flat, and the water lazily rolls in and laps over our feet.
I found a Conch shell laying all alone on the wet sand. My very first one since being in Ecuador, and I think it is very cool. Part of the outer shell has eroded away forming a window into the cool design inside. It is the perfect Christmas present from Ecuador!
When Heidi and I got back to the thatched cabana, everyone was in the process of packing up. When we finished loading the truck and trailer with the chairs and tables, we all sat on the concrete stoop and watched the heavy sun sink into the ocean-colored cloud line above the water.
The few of us who remained at the beach got to experience a Christmas sunset together. The music did not come from itunes, but from the ocean’s rhythm and roll of its waves onto shore. Instead of lights on a tree, changing light colored the skyscape above the sea. It was a quiet and peaceful moment.
It is time to pile into the truck and head back to The Cottages. We are all tired after a great day. It was a tight fit for those of us in the bed of the pickup truck and true to form, boys will be boys. After a few minutes on the bouncy dirt road leaving the beach, Chase couldn’t keep his feet to himself and tried to torment his younger brother.
Merry Christmas everyone!