We are celebrating Christmas in our new traditional fashion: by spending the holidays with the kosher Badgetts and not celebrating. DSC_0063It's now oh so de rigeur and oh so much more fun than the old way. The Bs have come every (#1) Christmas (#2) week (#3) since our first in Costa Rica. If Willow didn't arrive the middle of December, we'd be sitting
around a fake tree opening gifts bought with money we don't have pretending to celebrate the birth of Christ who we don't know.

I'm not big on the whole Christ-as-the-human-son-of-God thing. I'm aware this could get me tossed out of the GOP, but I'm willing to risk it. I practice a simple spiritual program, I enjoy the yearly excuse for gushing warmth, lunches with friends, eating cookies and pie, and sharing the love. I call my higher power God and believe deep down in my tiny soul that she exists.

But when it comes to The Birthday, I'm über suspicious of the Bible. It's been translated by old white men through the ages. How trustworthy have they turned out to be? As a group, they are suspect, always looking out for number one in the guise of looking out for you. Like Congress, where more than a few old white women have joined the fun. If I could read Aramaic, Hebrew and Greek, get the story from the horses' mouths, I might be convinced. Until then, it's just another bedtime story.

The movie Zeitgeist, minutes 11 to 37:20, provides a fascinating explanation of how the story evolved. Fascinating like What The Bleep was fascinating: totally outside the box (unless, of course, you had a classical education). While you are waiting for the movie to load, go ahead and listen to the first four beautiful box-breaking minutes. The voice you hear is Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche teaching a thing or two.

So Christmas is not my bag. It is, however, and as you must know by now, Costa Rica's bag, big time. From the first decorations to tonight's hours-long fireworks display, this country knows how to celebrate. I will enjoy vicariously!

Map liberia with x Today, Christmas Eve, the Bs and our boys are in Liberia (circled in blue on the map – click on the map to make it bigger.) Liberia is in the middle of the desert of Guanacaste, it looks like a town in TX surrounded by mountains, and it's hot as Hades. It has an international airport and is where you fly into to go visit the beautiful places in Costa Rica. Who ever heard of going to Liberia for a vacation? Um, Robert. And, actually, he found some stuff worth seeing: Volcán Rincon, for starters. They are going there today. We'll see what else they find to do.

And what are Hal and I doing? This. And photographing our free-range chickens who are scratching around outside my window. Every once in a while, we listen, but we don't hear anything except chickens and birds outside. Inside, it's very, very quiet… lovely.

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