how was your christmas? mine was filled with brightly lit firecrackers, which i watched not from the streets, but from the comfort of my bed.
i had heard that granada’s residents went wild on christmas eve with intense merry making and firecracker lighting. all true. it began around 5 p.m. with a few intensely loud, rattling fireworks and escalated from there.
i headed out to dinner before 6 so i wouldn’t get caught on the streets in the middle of christmas eve revelry with all of the assorted bombas including rockets and other festive explosives. i’m quite sure i would have been safe enough, but i wasn’t anxious to jump out of my skin every few seconds as i walked through the streets dodging crackling, exploding, firecrackers.
seeing all of the families sitting out in their rockers on the sidewalks this past week has been lovely. looking at their lights and christmas decorations inside the open doorways memorable. i decided to pass on the frenetic conclusion to christmas week and sequester myself in my rooftop bedroom reading and writing the night away.
little did i know i would be able to see such a dazzling display of glittering lights from my bedroom, the area of the house i theorized would be the quietest space in the house as it wasn’t open to the outdoors.
at midnight i was awakened by thousands of fireworks shooting up into the sky, their fading embers drifting over the city. it was a dramatic conclusion to the night.
what do my photos have to do with any of this? nada!
these photos are from my trek to the gorgeous granada cementerio. the lavish mausoleums and ornate tombs are the final resting places of 6 nicaraguan presidents and a veritable who’s who list of nicaraguan notables.
i had to go!
i wandered through the expansive grounds studying the graves, most of which are from the late 18th and early 19th century.
while i’m typing this post it is drizzling in the open courtyard and house geckos are chirping to each other. a lovely breeze is blowing, rustling the leaves of the pots of tropical shrubs.
and since this post is jumping all over the place i wanted to share a part of a poem.
one written by the nicaraguan poet-hero rubén darío. who, by the way is not buried at this cemetery, but rather at a cathedral in léon nicaragua.
excerpted from Far Away
ox that I saw in my childhood, as you steamed
in the burning gold of the nicaraguan sun,
there on the rich plantation filled with tropical
harmonies; woodland dove, of the woods that sang
with the sound of the wind, of axes, of birds and wild bulls:
i salute you both, because you are both my life.
isn’t the hand-lettering on the graves beautiful?
i’ve been reading various histories of nicaragua at night.
some parts so compelling i read them aloud. there’s no one to hear me. unless the walls are listening.
or the geckos.
either way, reading is one way i process my experience of a place.