I was homesick.
I missed the holidays and wearing boots and drinking egg nog lattes and making pumpkin rolls with my mom. It didn’t feel like Christmas, not even a little bit.
I love the winter season- ski days and cocktail parties and shows downtown. I knew that the holidays would not be the same during our time traveling, but I didn’t expect to miss the way we celebrate them at home so very much.
I don’t believe that presents are an important part of Christmas, but I did want to find one thing that “santa” could leave for Bitty. So we went to the mall.
Bitty had a game on our ipad called Princess Palace Pets and she would often play it and get excited to show us the pets she cared for, her “visitors.”
Gauthier found the perfect gift- a Palace Pet named Teacup, one of her favorites. We were able to hide it from her and get it back to the house and hidden away.
Christmas eve came. We spent the sunny and windy day down at the beach, building snow men in the sand.
That evening we went to see the circus that had come to town. The audience was small, maybe 50 people. The show was super cheesy, as were the cheese puffs that were sold in place of popcorn : ) We watched young kids perform dance routines and trampolene acts and rope climbing stunts. There were no animals, no flying trapeze. The jokes were in speed Spanish- We understood nothing and yet Bit laughed as if on cue. (She truly makes the world around her sparkle)
After the show we caught a $2 cab back to our place. (A cab ride anywhere in Salinas cost $2) As planned Gauthier snuck bit’s gift into his backpack and said he was going out for a walk, several minutes later he came running back yelling that we needed to come down right away!!!
Bit and I hurried down the stairs and out the gate. He told us he had just seen a shining sleigh fly away from the beach and that we should rush to see if anything had been left!
When we arrived at the dark beach we saw a faint glow in one of the small fishing boats that lined the shore. Sitting on a bench in the boat was a Christmas tree!!! A plastic iridescent 5″ tall glowing little tree. And under the tree were two gifts– a lovely white dress for myself, and Bit’s Princess Palace Pet!!!
Bit was estatic! Gauthier left us in the boat to go look on the beach to see if anything else had been left… And there he found another gift from Santa….
We watched in wonder as color lit the night sky. Bit and I “ooooh’d” and “awwww’d” as fireworks exploded and sparkled overhead . Christmas had actually come!.
I felt like a little girl next to my little girl there in that boat.
And though we were far from home, we found the Christmas spirit present in our hearts, on that beach in Salinas, with our young and handsome Santa : )