Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas in GTMO- Faries on the Tour of Homes

One of the events that take place here in Guantanamo during the holidays is the Tour of Homes, sponsored by the Guantanamo Bay Spouses Club. During this event residents volunteer to have their decked out homes show cased and entered as part of the tour. Their job is simply to decorate as much or as little as they wish and in any style they wish and some choose to provide some light drinks and snacks, others simply show-off the outdoors. The rest is up to the visitors who tour in groups of five or six and make their way from home to home. There's no competition or judging, we simply visit and get ideas or get to see how others decorate during the winter holidays.
One of my favorite homes this year had the prettiest fairies throughout the house. I loved their faces, their poses, and the different personalities. The owner of this home gave me permission to take pictures and post them. They are just so precious. Here are some of her treasures. I hope you'll enjoy them as much as we did and if you have anything to add about these pretty fairies or your own collection of winter decor, please leave a comment.

I have to say, she is my favorite :-)

I have more but have no access to my photos from this location.

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Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Holidays, GTMO Latino, and life in Guantanamo Bay

I can not believe it is the middle of December already. I feel like November was a mad rush. Even here in GTMO, people prepare themselves for the Holidays in December. You've heard me talk about our store here. It's adequate for size of this base and the population. But when a sale is announced you better believe the store sells out of their merchandise...FAST! Black Friday was Special. There were people lined up for hours before the store opened at 6:00 am. What could be on sale? Most likely video game systems, games, and other electronics. I chose to rest, reflect on all we have to be thankful for, and I went for a run.. The 10K Turkey Trot. That was fun, sort of, I overheated and almost passed out but in the end, I finished the race and glad to have participated.

Here we are already planning the Christmas celebrations. Three days into the month we started celebrating with the tree lighting ceremony and performances by the local children. Then to the outdoor movies to see the Muppet Movie (it was just OK by the way). Exactly one week later we continued the celebration with a float parade. Last year we rode the float for Public Works, this year we chose to just watch the parade...that was way more fun and the kids had a great time visiting Santa, eating cookies and hot cocoa, and again watching the carolers on stage. Yup, another fun evening in GTMO. That wasn't, isn't the end... There's something going on daily it seems. Santa can be seen at the store, at school, the Bayview and at no point are we waiting in ling lines nor do we ever pay anything for pictures with Santa. The kids will be so spoiled when we leave here. My favorite is that in every picture you'll see the kids with shorts and t-shirts and sandals while Santa is probably cooking in his suit. But he is a cool Santa, you never see him sweat.

We've been to a few parties, a coup,e of luncheons, and best of all was experiencing the GTMO Latino's Parranda. They show up when you least expect them and start singing the most lively, fun, Christmas songs. I offer them a little drink and they keep singing. It was a lot of fun! Not your everyday caroling that's for sure.

Speaking of GTMO Latino, if you happen to be Latino and are considering moving to GTMO, trust me, you will not be alone. You will have an instant family upon arrival. It is so nice to have such a welcoming, fun, active community in a place so distant from home. You don't even need to speak Spanish to hang with them. I will miss them when we leave.

Speaking of missing people... I miss all my friends who have left the island before me. It has been hard, every time one leaves because we really don't know when well see each other again. However sad it may be to say goodbye, missing them this much only means that our friendship was real and strong. I have been blessed with some really great friends .

Our time in GTMO is approaching. Six to eight months from what I hear. Not sure where well go next so I won't dwell on that right now. I will just continue to enjoy life in GTMO... Diving, running, teaching, and watching the most amazing skies I have ever seen!

Until next time....