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Sunday, December 03, 2006
Christmas Past
Mary at Owlhaven asked a question that I am definitely in the mood to answer. She asked what was our favorite vacation.

That's harder than you might think because I have been lucky to have some really fabulous vacations. I've been working on a personal project this week that I don't want to go into too much detail about right now. Suffice to say it's something I'm doing for my family, and I hope they enjoy it. It also put me in a contemplative mood.

We moved around a lot when I was growing up, but we also got to visit some pretty great places. One of my favorite vacation memories, however, was Christmas in 1977. We had never taken a Christmas vacation before, and it was perfect. We went to Mexico City, Mexico for about two weeks.

I have so many wonderful memories from those two weeks that it seems as if we had to have stayed at least a month or two. I was 16 years old (2nd from the left in the picture) and totally enchanted with the country. I had been born in Mexico City, but we moved away when I was three years old. I was taking Spanish in school and had mastered counting and asking for the bathroom.

The city was ablaze with Christmas lights and decorations. It was beautiful. We visited museums, the zoo, walked the city streets, ate wonderful food, and visited old friends. My parents made arrangements to meet up with the couple that had been their best friends when they were a young married couple with a new baby. This couple had a son a little older than me and a daughter inbetween me and my sister. We spent a lot of time with their family while we were in Mexico. Sr. D'Avila and his son, Fernando, took us on a day trip to the pyramids. On the way we stopped at a beautiful house (I can't remember exactly whose it was. Maybe theirs?) for a snack and a game of pool. I was a mean shot in those days.

We also spent time with my dad's old business partner and his wife, and with my father's Uncle Joe. Uncle Joe was a wonderful man. We had seen him once or twice when he came to the States and visited us. He was a wholesale jeweler. He was a warm and loving man and was always so happy to see us. Uncle Joe's sister, my grandmother, had died when my father was 16 years old so we never knew her. Uncle Joe and his children were our only relatives on my dad's side.

This is one of my favorite vacation memories for many reasons. My father worked so many hours that we would often go days without seeing him. We had him to ourselves for two weeks. I remember how happy he was sharing with us his Mexico City. My mom was also really happy to be back in Mexico. I remember getting along with all my sisters during that time. If we fought, I have forgotten those memories. Trust me, when you're raising four girls, they fight. :o) We saw Mexico through the eyes of tourists, through the eyes of our newlywed parents as they shared their memories, and through the eyes of the locals.

The D'Avila children shared their Mexico with us as they brought my sister and I with them when they attended the holiday parties to which they were invited. I say children now though at the time I thought we were all quite grown up. They were 17 and 15. My sister and I were 14 and 16. I was the orginial teenage drama queen with an overly romantic streak, so you can imagine that I was totally swept off my feet by the son. Yes, the perfect family vacation has to have a little romance when you're 16.


Blogger owlhaven said...

That sounds just cool!!


Blogger Barb said...

What a wonderful memory, Magi. Your growing up sounds a lot like mine. We moved a lot and there were times my father worked three jobs and we hardly ever saw him.

How special that yours shared this with you.

Blogger Pamela said...

Magi, this is my favorite post you have ever written! It just brought such a good warm feeling to me as I read it.

What a whirlwind fun family packed vacation you had in Mexico City! I have always been enthralled with the Pyramids. How sweet of your host family letting you go to the Christmas parties too. Nothing wrong with there being a cute 16 year old boy when you're 16 too!

Hope you'll be able to share the surprise you are working on later with us! :)

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